Evening Update Tuesday 3 August 2021

Guadeloupe has become the latest French overseas department to announce lockdown measures because of rapidly rising Covid-19 cases. A daily curfew will apply from 8pm to 5am as from tomorrow for at least three weeks. Travel during the day will be restricted to a 10km radius and bars, gyms, stadiums and swimming pools will be closed. The director of the Regional Health Agency for Guadeloupe described the rise in cases as a "catastrophic situation". Meanwhile, Martinique, another French Carribean territory, has already gone into partial lockdown and the India Ocean island of La Reunion will enter partial lockdown this weekend.

In our region, the hospital in Bastia in Corsica is reportedly close to full capacity because of a recent surge in Covid-19 cases on the island. The head of emergency services at the hospital has said that 90% of covid admissions are unvaccinated.

A food store on the rue d'Italie in Nice has been closed down by authorities because it was selling food unfit for human consumption. The Municipal Police destroyed more than a ton of food following a check carried out on the store. An administrative closure order was issued with immediate effect.

The municipality of Rimplas in the Mercantour National Park has been recognized as a beneficiary of a state of natural disaster for land movements as a result of Storm Alex last October. The decree was published in the official journal on August 1 and victims have 10 days from publication to submit an estimate of losses with their insurance companies in order to benefit from the compensation scheme.

Motorway operator VINCI Autoroutes are saying that with the approach of the second “crossover” of the summer holidays, traffic will increase from this Thursday August 5 on the main axes of the motorway network. In our region, the A8 motorway, between Aix-en-Provence and the Italian border, will experience heavy to saturated traffic on Friday, especially on the outskirts of the main towns. However, it's on Saturday that traffic will be heaviest in both directions throughout the day. On Sunday the traffic will be busy, mainly in the evening, in the Aix-en-Provence area. You can get more information about travel on motorways, not only in our region but nationally, at https://www.vinci-autoroutes.com

The municipality of Nice is carrying out a trial of solar powered litter bins. The bins make it possible to compact 5 to 9 times the usual amount of waste thrown inside. One they are full the bins automatically alert municipal workers via telephone to optimize collection rotations. If the experiment is successful, the objective is to install around 50 bins of the same type along the Promenade des Anglais.

 

BUSINESS

The International Monetary Fund has announced a large injection of funds to help economies hit by the coronavirus pandemic. The Board of Governors of the IMF approved an allocation of $650 billion, the largest in the IMF’s history. It said that the funds will boost the liquidity and reserves of the organization's 190 member countries and foster the resilience and stability of the global economy. It will particularly help the most vulnerable countries better cope with the impact of the COVID-19 crisis.

Energy comany BP has announced a share buyback of $1.4 billion. The company reported an underlying replacement cost profit of almost 2.8 billlion dollars for the second quarter. It made a loss of over 6.6 billion dollars in the same quarter last year when the world economy was sufferng from the initial effects of the pandemic. BP CEO Bernard Looney said that the company is making good progress in executing its strategy to become an integrated energy company.

UK food retailer Greggs has said that it will open about 100 net new shops this year which are expected to create 500 new retail roles in the second half of its financial year. It currently has more than 2,100 retail outlets throughout the UK. The comany said that delivery service is now available from 837 of its shops.


SPORT

Olympics.... Simone Biles won bronze in the women's beam final as China's Guan Chenchen won gold. Biles had pulled out of four events to prioritise her mental health. Norway's Karsten Warholm won gold in the men's 400m hurdles. Lisa Carrington from New Zealand won two gold medals in the canoe sprint. Germany's Malaika Mihambo took the women's long jump gold. China's Xie Siyi won his second diving gold medal by winning the 3m springboard title. Belgium are through to the men's Olympic hockey final after a 5-2 win over India.

Rugby Union... Warren Gatland has made a large number of changes to the British and Irish Lions squad for Saturday's third Test against South Africa. Starting players include Ken Owens, Alun Wyn Jones, Ali Price, Bundee Aki, Josh Adams and Liam Williams. Also included are Finn Russell, Adam Beard and Sam Simmonds. However, Owen Farrell, Taulupe Faletau, Anthony Watson and Stuart Hogg are all out of the squad for Saturday's match.

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