Evening Update Tuesday 15 March 2022

President Macron has said that France will take its share of Ukranian refugees and "our duty is to be able to welcome them and to protect them in the best possible conditions". Speaking on a visit to a refugee reception centre in north-west France this afternoon he said he wanted to thank all the French associations which are working to accept refugees. Regardng his recent telphone conversations with President Putin, he said that he continued to belive that it is useful to engage in such discussions and that he doesn't rule out travelling to Moscow or Kyiv but will do it when he considers that there can be a tangible result. President Macron also offered asylum to the Russian television journalist who recently held up a placard protesting at the Ukraine conflict during a news programme. He said that he would propose this in his next discussion with President Putin.

French Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian has tested positive for Covid-19. He tweeted that in accordance with the health protocol in force he is isolating himself at the Quai d'Orsay and continues to work remotely.

French Secretary of State for Transport Jean-Baptiste Djebbari has been in Nice today. He held a meeting with Nice mayor Christian Estrosi, Luc Lallemand the CEO of SNCF networks and Franck Gold-nadel the Chairman of the Board of Nice Cote d'Azur airport. The minister also visited Nice station to talk to staff.

The Prefect of the Var has reminded residents who are aged over 80 that they may be eligible for a Covid-19 booster dose, as is now the case throughout France. To be eligible it must be more than 3 months since you had your last booster dose.

One of the major business events on the Riviera calendar has got underway today. MIPIM, the international event for real estate professionals is taking place at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes until this Friday. This year's event  features the main theme of "Driving Urban Change".

There was an increase in road fatalities in February in France compared to February 2021 but numbers were down compared to February 2019. According to estimates by the National Interministerial Road Safety Observatory, 212 people lost their lives on the roads of mainland France in February this year, compared to 176 in February 2021 but February last year was an atypical month marked by travel restrictions. The figure is down by 17% compared to February 2019.

 

BUSINESS

Stock markets in China and Hong Kong have fallen today as China widens its Covid lockdowns. The operations of many international companies in China and their Chinese suppliers have been affected, raising renewed concern about disruption to supply chains.

Business confidence in Germany has fallen sharply according to a new survey. ZEW said that their economic sentiment survey showed the biggest drop in expectations since it began in 1991. It said that "the war in Ukraine and the sanctions against Russia are significantly dampening the economic outlook for Germany".

New figures show that wage growth in the UK has failed to keep up with the rising cost of living between November and January. The data from the Office for National Statistics shows that wages rose, but when taking rising prices into account, regular pay showed a 1% fall from a year earlier. However, the figures show a continuing recovery in the labour market, with a quarterly increase in the employment rate and a decrease in the unemployment rate.


SPORT

Golf.... Henrik Stenson has been named as Europe's captain for the 2023 Ryder Cup.The 2016 Open champion has played in five Ryder Cups and was the winner on three occasions.

Football... Christian Eriksen has been included in Denmark's international squad for the first time since suffering a cardiac arrest at Euro 2020 last summer. He was later fitted with a type of pacemaker.

Cricket...Australia have beaten West Indies by seven wickets in their latest Women's World Cup game in Wellington. Australia now top the eight-team group with four wins from four games.

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