Evening Update Wednesday 19 April 2023

President Macron has been visiting a factory in Alsace today where he was met by the sound of demonstrators bashing saucepans together. It's the first such visit by the President since his televised address regarding pension reforms. Demonstrators gathered near the factory and the electricity supply was cut off to the area during his visit. President Macron said that "it isn't pans that will move France forward" and "the reality of the whole country is not only those who make noise with pans or who groan". During the visit the President confirmed that he still has confidence in his Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne.

The secretary general of one of France's biggest unions has announced that he's stepping down. Laurent Berger told newspaper Le Monde that he will leave his post on 21 June and will be replaced by Marylise Lion, the current number two at the organisation.

Train traffic will once again be disrupted on the SNCF network because of tomorrow's national day of industrial action. As usual on days of industrial action, services are expected to be affected from this evening. You can check specific trains via the timetable search on the website https://www.ter.sncf.com/sud-provence-alpes-cote-d-azur

A meeting of the entire diplomatic corps of Monaco has been held in the Principality. The Monaco Department of External Relations and Cooperation organized the Diplomatic Conference. Various current topics were discussed during these two days, including urban development projects in terms of construction and mobility, the follow-up to the Moneyval report, Monaco's attractiveness strategy and economic situation, digital security and the state of negotiations on an association agreement with the European Union.

The Var prefecture has reminded local residents that if you're going on holiday, the police and gendarmerie can monitor your home during their daily patrols. You will be notified in the event of unusual circumstances such as damage, attempted break-ins or burglary. You need to register for the service. It's available across France, not just in the Var. More information can be found on the Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr



Food prices in the UK have risen at their fastest rate for 45 years. The Office for National Statistics said that the price of food and non-alcoholic drinks rose by 19.1% in the year to March. The cost of milk rose by 40%, granulated sugar by 32% and cheddar cheese by 49%. The consumer prices index fell less than expected to 10.1%. Meanwhile, EU statistics agency Eurostat said that annual inflation in the Eurozone fell to 6.9% in March, down from 8.5% in February.

Netflix has announced that it's closing it's DVD rental service in September. California-based Netflix started out by shipping DVDs to customers in the US in 1998. It launched its streaming service in 2007 and now has over 230 million subscribers around the world. Netflix described the DVD service as the "booster rocket that got streaming to a leading position".

India will soon overtake China as the country with the largest population according to a report from the United nations. It said that by the middle of this year India's population will reach 1.4286 billion compared to China's 1.4257 billion.



Cricket... David Warner has been included in the Australia squad for the World Test Championship final against India and the first two Ashes Tests with England. Australia play India at the Oval on 7 June before Ashes Tests at Edgbaston and Lord's. The Ashes series concludes with Tests at Headingley, Old Trafford and The Oval in July.

Rugby Union...England and Bristol player Ellis Genge has been given three-week ban for a dangerous tackle on Tom Curry. If he completes a World Rugby coaching intervention programme, the suspension will be further reduced to two weeks. Genge captained England for the first time during this year's Six Nations.

Snooker... Kyren Wilson has made a maximum 147 break during the World Championship in Sheffield. Wilson potted 15 reds, 15 blacks and all the colours.

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