Evening Update Monday 14 November 2022

The UK and France have announced a new agreement aimed at reducing the number of migrants crossing the English Channel in small boats. The UK will pay France an extra 8 million pounds per year to pay for increased surveillance of French beaches, whilst UK police officers will also be able to observe patrols within France. The number of French officers patrolling the coast to try to stop people setting off will rise from 200 to 300 over five months.

Medical laboratories across France have gone on an indefinite strike starting today. They are protesting at government cuts of 250 million euros per year and proposals that would see less being received from health insurers.

The Var is on a Meteo France yellow alert for storms and heavy rain and flooding from 8pm this evening until 6am tomorrow. Meanwhile the Gard and l'Herault departments have been placed on an orange level alert. Reports say that there has been torrential rain and some flooding around Montpellier this afternoon.

President Macron and the Italian President Sergio Matterella have issued a joint statement emphasising the importance of relations between France and Italy. In the statement the two heads of state said that they recognise the need for full cooperation in all areas, both between the two states and within the European Union. The statement follows a recent row between the two governments over the migrant rescue ship Ocean Viking, to which Italy refused to grant permission to dock in its ports. The ship eventually was taken in by the French government.

The SNCF have said that there will be no trains between Nice and Ventimiglia for much of the weekend after next. Work on the tracks means that all trains along that section of line will be cancelled from Friday 25 November at 8pm until Sunday 27 November at 9am.

Nice is amongst the safest big cities in France for crimes such as assault, theft and burglaries according to a ranking compiled by Le Parisien. The list is based on data from the government's Ministerial Statistical Service. Nice mayor Christian Estrosi said that the results were encouraging, coming a few weeks after data suggesting that Nice was amongst the cities where acts of violence have dropped significantly on transport.

Various water restrictions in the Var have been extended into December. The prefecture said that 96 communes in the department are still in water crisis. Details can be found on the prefecture's website https://www.var.gouv.fr/les-mesures-d-interdiction-et-de-restriction-de-l-a10958.html

 

BUSINESS

A new survey has pointed to a weak level of confidence among UK firms in October, as business expectations slumped to their lowest since 2009. However, the survey by Accenture UK and S&P Global suggested that businesses remained optimistic on average across 11 of the 12 UK regions in October, with the South East and London reporting the strongest confidence for future activity, while West Midlands firms were upbeat about employment. It said that while firms hope to add jobs, they often lacked confidence about finding staff with the required skills. Only 34% of respondents expect to find experienced staff, whilst only 50% feel confident about hiring entry-level candidates over the next year.

The UK stock market has lost its position as Europe's most-valued, according to new data. France has now taken the top spot as the combined value of its companies' shares are boosted by currency movements and demand for French luxury goods. It is the first time Paris has overtaken London since records began in 2003, according to data from Bloomberg.

Opec has lowered it's forecast for oil demand this year. The group of oil producers forecast that oil demand would now be down by 100,000 barrels this year and by the same amount next year, because of potentially reduced economic activity and China's zero Covid policy.

 

SPORT

Rugby Union… Will Stuart and Adam Radwan have been recalled to England's training squad for Saturday's match against New Zealand. Stuart has recovered from a recent knee injury.

Cricket.. England player Moeen Ali has said that it's "horrible" that England will be starting a three-match one-day international series four days after their T20 World Cup victory. They won the T20 trophy on Sunday and the first game against Australia starts on Thursday. He said that "to give 100% all the time is difficult when you're playing every two, three days".

Athletics... 100 metre world champion Shelley-Anne Fraser-Pryce is among the finalists for the Women's World Athlete of Year. She is joined by American 400m hurdles gold medallist Sydney McLaughlin and Venezuelan triple jump world record holder Yulimar Rojas. Peruvian race walk double champion Kimberly Garcia and Nigerian 100m hurdles gold medallist Tobi Amusan make up the shortlist. The winner will be announced by World Athletics in December.

 

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