Evening Update Thursday 10 February 2022

President Macron has presented his plans for the future of France's energy sector. Speaking during a visit to a factory in Belfort in north-east France this afternoon, he announced plans for a large increase in nuclear power.  Six new next-generation nuclear power plants are envisaged with the first one being commissioned in 2035. There would be a study into the possibility of another eight by 2050. As regards solar energy, he said that he wished to see a ten-fold increase in solar power and also announced planned increases in onshore and offshore wind power. The President added that a wide public consultation on energy is planned for the second quarter of this year

The number of cases of Covid-19 continues to decline according to new figures published today by Sante Publique France. There were 179,614 cases in the 24 hours up to yesterday evening with the weekly average of cases falling under 200,000 for the first time in several weeks. However, there are still a significant number of cases in hospitals. About 32,800 people currently in hospital have Covid-19 including just over 3,500 in intensive care.

The whole of the south-east of France continues to be on the highest level of alert for influenza. According to Sante Publique France, at a national level there has been a further increase in emergency room visits and hospitalizations, particularly amongst children under 5.

Nice Mayor and President of the Nice Cote d'Azur Metropole Christian Estrosi has attended a ceremony to open part of the upgrade to the RM6202. The event in Saint-Martin-du-Var was also attended by the mayor of the village Herve Paul.

France has sent emergency aid to Madagascar after a cyclone hit the island. The government has dispatched a team of 60 rescuers for three weeks to set up a water purification unit and to carry out aerial reconnaissance using drones. It is also subsidizing the deployment of 75 tonnes of emergency aid by the French Red Cross to help over 15,000 people.

Monaco's new Ambassador to UNESCO, H.E. Ms Anne-Marie Boisbouvier, has presented her Credentials to the Director-General of UNESCO, Ms Audrey Azoulay. The official ceremony took place at the UN Headquarters in Paris.

 

BUSINESS

Inflation in the United States has risen at it's fastest rate since 1982. According to data released this afternoon by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the consumer price index rose by 7.5% on an annual basis in January. On a monthly basis the rise was 0.6%.

Consumer goods company Unilever has announced its fastest underlying sales growth in nine years. In its full year results for 2021 it also said that turnover increased by 3.4% and underlying operating profit increased by 2.9%. However, CEO Alan Jope said the "the major challenge" of 2021 has been the "dramatic rise" of input costs. He said that for 2022 the company currently expects very high input cost inflation in the first half which may moderate in the second half and operating margin is expected to be down as a result.


SPORT

Rugby Union... Johnny Sexton is out of this weekend's Six Nations match against France with a hamstring injury. The Ireland captain suffered the injury during training. Joey Carbery replaces him and James Ryan will be captain for the match in Paris which kicks off at 5.45pm French time on Saturday.

Scotland have made five changes for their match against Wales. Jamie Ritchie has been ruled out for the remainder of the Six Nations because of a hamstring injury.

Cycling... It's been announced that the Tour of Britain will return to Yorkshire for the first time since 2009 and will also take in Dorset for the first time. The Tour will start in Aberdeen on 4 Sepember and finish in the Isle of Wight. The full route is scheduled to be announced in April.

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