Evening Update Monday 26 April 2021

President Macron has said that the government may change the start time of the curfew. During a visit to a school this morning, the President reportedly said that the government will "try to move it a little because 7pm is very early". Regarding the reopening of restaurants, he said that the government can't reopen restaurants at the end of May or in June in departments where the virus still circulates a lot, but "we will have to reopen them" in departments "where it has fallen a lot". He added that the government will try to reopen cultural establishments including theatres and cinemas "from the first phase, with smaller numbers" of spectators.

Nursery and elementary classes in France have resumed today after three weeks of closure due to the health crisis. Middle and high school students have one more week of distance learning before being allowed back into the classroom on Monday May 3rd.

The French government has said that the "vast majority of vulnerable people" have received a first dose of a vaccine, including all residents of care homes, 70% of over 75's and 70% of health professionals.

The EU Commission has confirmed that it is taking legal action against AstraZeneca. The Commmission alleges that the company did not meet it's commitments in the delivery of vaccines. AstraZeneca said this afternoon that it had fully complied with its agreement with the European Commission and will strongly defend itself.

Meteo France have a yellow weather warning for storms in the Var and the Alpes-Maritimes until 9.00 this evening.

The Prefect of the Var has placed the department on a drought alert. The rainfall deficit in the Var has reached nearly 30% and river flows are below normal. The prefecture is reminding residents of the need for economical management of water resources and recommends that leaks in water networks be addressed and water consumption be limited generally, including being vigilant about such activities as watering, cleaning cars and filling swimming pools. Full details are available on the Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr

Cannes has been nominated for the 2021 World Travel Awards.  The town is one of nine finalists for the top European destination for festivals and events and is one of seven finalists for the top seaside destination in Europe.

 

BUSINESS

Economic forecasting group, the EY Item Club, has forecast that the UK economy will grow by 6.8% this year. UK GDP shrank by a record 9.9% last year. The Item Club said that it expects the UK economy to return to its pre-pandemic size in the second quarter of 2022, which is three months earlier than previously forecast.

A quarantine free travel corridor is set to open between Singapore and Hong Kong from 26 May. It will be the second such scheme in the region after Australia and New Zealand launched a travel corridor between themselves last week.

A new survey has suggested that economic growth in Germany is being held back by supply chain disruption partly caused by the worldwide shortage of computer chips.  Nevertheless, German Economic research body the ifo Institute reported  that the business climate in manufacturing rose to its highest level since May 2018 as companies reported "greatly improved business". However, in the service sector, the business climate indicator fell somewhat, following a steep rise in the previous month.


SPORT

Cricket... Several overseas Indian Premier League players have reportedly ended their season early to return home. Andrew Tye, who was with Rajasthan Royals, flew to Sydney yesterday, citing the "stress of bubble life" and concerns about borders closing in Australia. However, a number of other Australian players currently remain, including Steve Smith, David Warner and Pat Cummins.

Netball... Sydney has won the right to host the 2027 Netball World Cup. Sydney has previously hosted the event twice, in 1991 and in 2015.

Football.... Arsenal player Folarin Balogun has signed a new long-term contract with the club. His previous deal was set to run out at the end of this season.

There’s one game tonight in the English Premier League. Leicester are playing Crystal Palace.

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