Evening Update Monday 13 September 2021

French Prime Minister Jean Castex has today launched the vaccination booster campaign in nursing homes by visiting a nursing home in the suburbs of Paris. Today is the opening day of the booster campaign for the most vulnerable people - nursing home residents, people with co-morbidities and people over 65, at least six months after their last injection.

An Afghanistan evacuation flight has arrived at Charles-De-Gaulle airport in Paris this afternoon. The plane contained 49 French nationals and their dependents, who were still present in Afghanistan after previous evacuation flights at the end of August. The evacuees first travelled from Kabul to Doha in Quatar and then on to France. The French government thanked the Qatari authorities for their help.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin and Health Minister Olivier Veran have been in the Isere department today to visit the scene of a helicopter crash in which one person died and four others were injured. The civil security helicopter crashed whilst trying to rescue a mountain biker yesterday. Gerald Darmanin said that President Macron had decided to propose the deceased man for the Legion d'Honneur.

The Var prefecture has reminded residents that there are many vaccination slots available at the 15 vaccination centers in the department. People over 12 years old can be vaccinated. Appointments can be made on the www.doctolib.fr website.

A 72 year old diver has died off the coast of the Var. A lifeboat from Cavalaire with a doctor on board attended the incident on Saturday but the diver couldn't be saved.

The UK government has attempted to terminate an agreement with a French company for Covid-19 vaccine deliveries. Valneva, which is based in Saint-Herb-lain in the Loire-Atlantique, said that it has received a termination notice from the UK Government in relation to a supply agreement for its COVID-19 vaccine. The UK government alleges that Valneva is in breach of its obligations under the supply agreement, but the Company strenuously denies this.

There's a new inductee into the Maritime Walk of Fame in Cannes. Well known French sailor Jean Le Cam attended a ceremony to unveil a plaque at Port Canto.  Le Cam was the hero of the last Vendée Globe race, during which he rescued fellow competitor Kevin Escoffier after Escoffier's yacht broke apart 840 miles off the coast of South Africa.


BUSINESS

Heathrow airport has said that passenger numbers remain 71% down in August versus the same month pre-pandemic. Heathrow is now the 10th busiest airport in Europe, down from it's number one place pre-pandemic.

Primark owner Associated British Foods has reported "very strong trading" at the clothing chain in the UK and those European regions where stores had reopened, with like-for-like sales in its third quarter 3% ahead of the comparable period two years ago. In a trading update released today it said that sales reflected some pent-up demand with very high basket sizes. However, is also said that sales in the current fourth quarter were affected by the impact on footfall as a result of the changes in public health measures in Primark's major markets, with like-for-like sales expected to be 17% lower than the same period two years ago.


SPORT

Cricket... Australia Test captain Tim Paine has said that he's aiming to be be fit for the Ashes in December despite surgery to treat a pinched nerve in his neck. He expects to be back in full training by next month.

Tennis... US Open winner Emma Raducanu's coach has said that her mental strength is "truly special". Andrew Richardson said that Raducanu's "ability to deal with adversity and compete is where it all starts". He said that there haven't yet been any conversations about the future. Raducanu is now expected to make a decision as to how many tournaments she'll compete in for the rest of the season. Indian Wells is just over three weeks away and she would compete as a wildcard as the entry list for the tournament has already been published.

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