Evening Update Tuesday 2 November 2021

President Macron has announced further details of the French government's plans to help reduce youth unemployment. In a Facebook post this morning the President gave further information regarding the Youth Engagement Contract he had previously announced in July. He said that from March 1, all young people under 26 who are without training or employment for several months, will be able to register and benefit from 15 to 20 hours of support per week to discover a profession, to train, to find an apprenticeship or a job. An allowance of up to 500 euros per month may be paid subject to income, attendance and acceptance of offers made. He said that he was addressing the younger generations in his Facebook post, including "those who lived through the pandemic in the age of freedom, those who are mobilizing for the climate emergency, those who are writing the future of France". He said that "the Nation will be there to support you and allow you to complete your projects". He concluded by saying that what he called "the confinement generation" can be the one of a new impetus for France.

Former French President Nicolas Sarkosy has appeared as a witness during a trial in Paris today. It's the first time that a French President has been required to attand such a hearing as a witness. Several former members of Nicolas Sarkosy's cabinet are defendants in the trial which concerns alleged irregularities in the finacing of opinion polls but the former president is not one of the accused and is covered by presidential immunity. During the hearing this afternoon, he refused to answer questions and said that being compelled to attend was a "completely unconstitutional" decision.

President Macron has said that France will delay retaliatory measures against the UK over post-Brexit fishing rights while talks continue. France had threatened to stop British boats offloading catches at French ports from midnight tonight. Meanwhile, UK Environment Secretary George Eustice said there had been what he called a "big de-escalation" of the row. The two sides had been under pressure to resolve their differences over the fishing dispute to prevent it drawing attention away from the Cop26 climate meeting in Glasgow.

The only surviving member of the attacks in Paris on November 13 2015 has been questioned for the first time during the special trial which has been underway for several weeks. Salah Abdeslam attempted to justify the attacks by saying they were in response to French military intervention against the so-called Islamic State in Syria.

The French government has said that it will offer accomodation to migrants who it plans to evict from their camp near Calais. The government appointed mediator has reportedly said that several hundred accomodation places will be made available in the region. The move follows a hunger strike which has so far lasted over three weeks by several of the migrants in the camp.

Meteo France have a yellow warning for storms in the Var and the Alpes-Maritimes from 3am to 10am tomorrow, Wednesday, morning.

The Prefect of the Var has reminded locals and visitors that access to the Plaine des Maures National Nature Reserve is strictly prohibited following the fire this summer. Controls are being carried out to enforce the ban and allow the site to be renatured. Further details are available on the Var Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr

The Saint-Charles railway station in Marseille was  evacuated briefly this evening. Reports say the station was closed because of a suspicious package but has now reopened.

Twelve families in public housing have been summoned to appear before a recent committee meeting of Cote d'Azur Habitat because of infractions including noise pollution, congestion in common areas, damage to property, drug trafficking and making threats. Of the twelve families, seven appeared before the committee and made commmitments to change their behaviour, two didn't give any commitments and three didn't attend. The President of Cote d'Azur Habitat, Anthony Borre, said that fines or legal proceedings may be initiated against some of those concerned.

 

BUSINESS

Energy company BP has reported significantly higher quarterly profits amid rising oil and gas prices. The company said underlying replacement cost profit was $3.3bn in the three months to the end of September, comared with $2.8bn in the second quarter. In the same quarter last year profits were just $86m during the period when economic activity worldwide was severely impacted by the pandemic.

Yahoo has announced that it is ending its presence in mainland China because of what it called an "increasingly challenging business and legal environment" in the country. It said that it remains committed to the rights of its users and a free and open internet. The move follows LinkedIn's recent decision to withdraw from China beacause of "a significantly more challenging operating environment" and greater compliance requirements.

Eurozone Manufacturing dropped to an 8-month low in October according to a new survey. IHS/Markit said that  supply-side issues continued to disrupt output and affect order book volumes. In France, production levels fell in October for the first time since the start of 2021 as firms struggled to secure raw materials and demand conditions showed signs of weakening. However, the survey pointed to another strong expansion by Germany’s manufacturing sector but growth was again held back by material shortages which also resulted in a record increase in selling prices.

SPORT


Football.. Antonio Conte has been confirmed as the new manager of Tottenham. The deal runs until the summer of 2023 but with an option to extend it. He was formerly manager at Chelsea, with whom he won the Premiership and the FA Cup, as well as Inter Milan which he left in May this year.

Rugby Union... Saracens have announced that Billy Vunipola will be out of action for a month because of injury. He sustained knee ligament damage during the club's match against Harlequins at the weekend.

London Irish have signed Olly Cracknell from Ospreys. He joined the Welsh club in early 2015 and made over 100 appearances.

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