French and Riviera News Friday 22nd October 2021

News 

Inflation allowance - Speaking on French television on Thursday evening Prime Minister Jean Castex has promised a "compensation of 100 euros for those who earn less than 2,000 euros net per month". A more than welcome boost for millions of French people in order to cope with the surge in prices at the petrol pump the aid will be paid automatically from December for employees, from January for “civil service employees” and “a little later for others”.

38 million people will be able to benefit from this “inflation allowance”. There will be no distinction between motorists and users of another means of transport. Castex added that to receive the compensation, the French concerned will have "nothing to do" because it will be "automatic". The allowance will be individualized and not per household: in other words, if a couple each earns less than 2,000 euros net, they will be entitled to 100 euros each.

Head of municipal police under investigation - The head of the municipal police in Nice is under investigation suspected of having continued to receive his salary from the national police for several years. Authorities raided the offices of Richard Gianotti on Thursday October 21st, as part of the investigation. He has since been suspended from his functions during the investigation. Before joining the municipal police in Nice in 2017, Gianotti was a national police officer for 30 years.

Plastic waste - The Operation Clean Sea association has once again raised the alarm on the state of the Mediterranean. This week members of the Operation Clean Sea association embarked on a mission to clear the plastic waste barely 15 kilometers from the region's coast. It is estimated that 80% of the waste found at sea comes from the land through the rainwater network.

Fans banned from travelling to Marseille for match - France’s Interior Ministry has announced that fans of Paris Saint-Germain football club will be banned from travelling to Marseille for Sunday's Ligue 1 match after several French matches were marred by violence in recent weeks. Individual or group travel by PSG supporters will also be prohibited starting at midnight on Saturday because relations between the clubs "have been tainted with animosity for several years”.

Ski resorts plan to reopen on December the 4th or possibly before - Several ski resorts in the Alpes-Maritimes have already announced their opening date for the 2021/22 season. For Isola 2000, Auron and the La Colmiane December 4th will mark the occasion or possibly the weekend before, should conditions allow.

Storm Aurore - 17,000 households were still without electricity in Northern France following Storm Aurore which hit the region on Thursday. SNCF traffic has gradually resumed a thousand agents were mobilized after several incidents were reported. Following the bad weather, there were 783 kilometers of traffic jams nationwide. Météo-France recorded winds of up to 175 km / h in some parts of Normandy.

Post-Brexit fisheries agreement - France has threatened to present sanctions against Britain by the "end of the week" if a post-Brexit fisheries agreement is not respected. French government spokesman Gabriel Attal said the measures would come into force sometime in November if more French fishermen were not granted licences before the end of October. France has asked the 27-nation EU collective to act as one in the dispute by preparing its own retaliation measures. 

Disastrous year for honey producers in France - The National Union of French Beekeeping (UNAF) has this week announced that it has been a “disastrous" year for honey producers in France, with poor weather over the spring and summer months blamed for a 50 percent drop in production compared to 2020. Honey production has been up and down over the years, but mostly down. In 1995, France produced about 32,000 tons of honey, while in 2019 it managed less than 10,000 tons.

Business

Toy maker Mattel has said that higher prices in the run-up to Christmas have not dulled people's appetites for toys. The toy giant raised prices after soaring shipping and raw materials costs. The toymaker said its third quarter sales grew 8% to $1.8bn (£1.1bn), and that it expected a strong Christmas.

Meanwhile the company behind brands such as PG Tips, Cornetto and Dove has said it will raise prices to cope with "elevated levels" of cost inflation which it expects to continue next year. On Wednesday, the Office for National Statistics said that the UK consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation slowed to 3.1% in the year to September.  However, inflation is expected to accelerate in the coming months due to a rise in energy costs as well as continuing disruption to UK and global supply chains.

More than 2,000 Amazon warehouse workers in New York City hope to hold a vote to unionise. It's the second organising effort at the online shopping giant this year and comes amid a pick-up in union activity across the US.

During a review at the World Trade Organisation China's trade policies have come under strong criticism. The US accused China of using "unfair trade practices" such as preferential treatment for state businesses. Meanwhile Australia said the country's behaviour was "inconsistent" with its WTO commitments. China said it was committed to deepening reform and opening up its economy.

Sport 

Formula One - Max Verstappen has admitted that his Red Bull team need to find more pace as they seek to beat Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes to the Formula 1 title. Verstappen leads Hamilton by six points before this weekend's US Grand Prix.

Rugby Union - Josh Adams believes Wales' attacking style of rugby will be more effective against southern hemisphere teams than the pragmatic approach the British and Irish Lions took in South Africa. The Lions and Springboks were both criticised for dour play as South Africa won their series this summer.

Tennis - Britain's Andy Murray has been knocked out in the second round of the European Open in Antwerp by world number 14 Diego Schwartzman.

Football – In the Premier League this weekend, this evening Arsenal play Aston Villa. Tomorrow Chelsea play Norwich, Crystal Palace play Newcastle United, Everton are at home to Watford, Leeds play Wolverhampton, Southampton play Burnley, Brighton play Manchester City. On Sunday Brentford lay Leicester, West Ham are at home to Tottenham and Manchester United play Liverpool.

Weather

Cloudy with some sunny intervals, highs of 21 degrees in Monaco, Nice and Antibes. 22 degrees in Saint Tropez with a mistral forecast. This evening going down to 13 degrees with clear skies.

The outlook for Saturday and Sunday - Fine with highs of 22 degrees.

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