Evening Update Thursday 13 January 2022

French Minister of Health Olivier Veran has announced that he has tested positive for Covid-19. He said this afternoon that he was going into confinement and would continue to perform his duties remotely.

The French government has announced that Covid-19 travel restrictions for those travelling to France from the UK will be relaxed from tomorrow morning. Vaccinated travellers will no longer need a compelling reason to enter France or need to self-isolate when they arrive. Non-vaccinated travellers will still need a compelling reason to enter France and cannot travel to France for leisure reasons. They must also still isolate upon arrival. A negative Covid-19 test, taken within 24 hours before leaving the UK, will be required for those who are vaccinated or unvaccinated.

Striking teachers staged a demonstration in the Place Massena in Nice this morning. According to the Education Ministry, 38.5% of primary school teachers nationally were on strike today. One of the main unions put the figure at 75%. Staff are protesting at the manner in which the government has impemented health protocols.

Power has now been restored to all the premises in central Nice which were affected by last night's power cut. About 5,000 homes and businesses in the Garibaldi, Bonaparte and Quai des Etats-Unis areas lost power following a transformer fire. Nice Deputy Mayor Anthony Borre thanked the teams from Enedis who worked overnight to restore supplies.

Some Orange customers in France have been experiencing problems sending and receiving e-mails today. The company said that problems may also be experienced connecting to customer accounts on orange.fr. It said on Twitter this afternoon that teams are fully mobilized to restore services and apologized for the inconvenience caused.

Controlled burning of undergrowth has been underway today in the vicinity of Carros at the Broc summit. Firefighters said that the operations generate a lot of smoke but local residents shouldn't be concerned.

The French government is establishing a new judicial unit to look into unsolved criminal cases, known as “cold cases”. The department will be devoted to criminal cases which have not so far been solved despite years of investigations. It will be attached to the Court of Appeal of Versailles, in Nanterre. 241 unresolved cases are concerned, which are divided into 173 unsolved crimes and 68 serial crime proceedings.

 

BUSINESS

Marks & Spencer and Tesco have both reported strong sales over the Christmas period. Tesco now expects annual income to hit the top end of forecasts and Marks & Spencer said it was "now more confident" of reaching previous expectations of at least £500m in profits for the full-year.

In late