Evening Update Tuesday 1 September 2020

French Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne has said that the government will "gradually implement" the new rules rearding the wearing of masks in workplaces which come into force today. Speaking in a television interview earlier today the minister said that the government is giving "everyone one week to take ownership" of the new regulations. She said that companies must have time to understand the new rules and for them to be discussed within businesses. A detailed health protocol for businesses was published by the French government last night. Businesses which don't comply with the protocol will be in breach of labour laws. The minister confirmed that, assuming an employee has been notified of the mask wearing regulations, anyone who doesn't comply could be subject to disciplinary action.

A fire in undergrowth in Flayosc in the Var this afternoon has quickly been brought under control. Reports say that seventeen firefighters backed up by two water bombing aircraft tackled the blaze on the old chemin des Arcs.

An 18 year old motorcyclist has been seriously injured in a collision with a car on the RD562 in Montauroux this morning. The victim was airlifted to hospital. An investigation has been opened.

SNCF have said that train services in south-west France have almost returned to normal today. Many services suffered two days of disruption because of technical problems which resulted in hundreds of passangers being stranded on trains overnight.

President Macron has offred to host a conference in October to help support Lebanon. The President is currently on his second visit to Beirut since the explosion on 4 August which killed over 200 people and injured several thousand others. Events are taking place today to mark the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Lebanese state, including a fly-past by the acobatics unit of the French Air Force,  the Patrouille de France.

The citadel in Villefrance-sur-Mer is set to receive funds to help in its restoration. The site has been selected by the heritage preservation mission headed by French TV presenter and writer Stephane Berne and will receive funds from the Loto du Patrimoine.

 

BUSINESS

Inflation in the Eurozone has turned negative. In August the CPI measure of inflation came in at minus 0.2% compared to the same month last year. Reduced energy prices accounted for much of the fall.

Facebook has said that it may have to stop users from sharing news content in Australia. Under proposed new legislation in Australia, internet companies such as Facebook and Google would have to pay for content reposted from news sites.

The EU's statistics body Eurostat has said that unemployment in the European Union stood at 7.2% in July, a slight rise from 7.1% in June. That means that an additional 336,000 people became unemployed in the month with a total of just over 15.1 million people being unemployed.

In the UK, consumer borrowing in July rose for the first time in five months. Newly published figures from the Bank of England also show that mortgage approvals in the month were just 10% below the level they were at before the pandemic.

The German government has said that economic contraction this year is expected to be 5.8% instead of the 6.3% it previously forecast. However, it also said that growth in 2021 is expected to be less than previously forecast, at 4.4%.


SPORT

Tour de France... Stage 4 of the Tour has been won by Primoz Roglic. Tadej Pogacar was second. Julian Alaphilippe was in fifth place but has retained the yellow jersey. Stage 4 was a route of 160.5km from Sisteron to Orcières-Merlette in the Hautes-Alpes.

Rugby Union... The French Top 14 match between Stade Francais and Bordeaux-Begles scheduled for this Friday has been postponed. The French National Rugby League said that Stade Francais hadn't been able to field enough front line players to allow the match to go ahead on Friday. The club has had about 20 cases of the coronavirus detected in its workforce since the beginning of August.

Changes have been announced to the World Sevens Series because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Hamilton and Sydney legs of the 2020-21 series in January have been cancelled. World Rugby now say that the next matches will be in Hong Kong and Singapore in April.

Football.. Croatain player Ivan Rak-itich is returning to Sevilla after being away from the club for the past six years. He's signed a new four year contract with the club. He had most recently been at Barcelona.

Cricket... England are playing Pakistan in the second T20 international at Old Trafford this evening. Play is scheduled to get underway at 7pm our time.

 

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