French and Riviera News Friday 24th November 2023

News

Funding increase for mayors across France - France’s Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne has announced an increase in the overall funding allocation to mayors across the country. 100 million euros will be added to the 220 million euros already included in the budget, which is currently being examined by Parliament. Borne spoke of welcoming a “clear increase to help with resources within our communities” as well as “additional aid for local councils to cope with the rise in electricity costs”.

Advertising campaign encouraging people not to buy anything - An advertising campaign launched by the French government to encourage people to “not buy anything new” with the hope of encouraging recycling to help the planet, has faced strong criticism from within the government. On Thursday France’s Finance Minister Bruno Le Marie referred to the campaign as “clumsy” adding that the “timing is appalling as many retail businesses are currently struggling in many city centres”. Those behind the project have since admitted that it would have been better to target online sales platforms rather than your local retail shop.

Knife attack - There has been another knife attack in Nice. This week has seen two previous stabbings occur in both the Moulin and Port district of the city. The latest incident occurred on Thursday evening, when two men were stabbed in the west of the city on Rue Jean Vigo and Boulevard René Cassin. The two stabbings took place within minutes of each other, both victims were taken to hospital. Little is known about the motive for the knife attacks or whether they are connected. Police are investigating.

Demonstration banned - The Alpes-Maritimes prefecture has banned a demonstration for the Palestinian people in Gaza planned for this Sunday in Nice. The MRAP had hoped to organize a demonstration to show support during the “Israeli-Palestinian” conflict on the place Garibaldi. A similar protest held on November 11th saw more than 300 people gather in Nice. The Prefecture argues that such a demonstration constitutes a risk of disturbing public order and also highlights that police will already be mobilised this Sunday at the Allianz Riviera for the match between Nice and Toulouse.

New train service on trial - The first Omneo train, which will be part of the Marseille-Toulon-Nice rail link, is to begin its speed tests trials in the Czech Republic. The service is due to welcome its first passengers in the PACA region from the summer of 2025. The train is part of a future fleet of regional express trains (TER) operated by Transdev from 2025. The future trains measure 110 meters and has 352 seats, plus 49 folding seats, spread over two levels, as well as 12 spaces for bicycles.

Local train network heavily disrupted this weekend - Meanwhile, due to work being carried out on the local train network. The SNCF has announced that from this Friday November 24th until Sunday 26th train traffic will be severely disrupted. No trains will run between Ventimiglia and Monaco on Saturday November 25, to find out more passengers are invited to check on the SNCF TER SUD website.

Le Saint-Yves is to be sold - Finally, it’s sad news for an establishment in our region with a 50-year history, as the hotel restaurant “Le Saint-Yves” is to be put up for sale. A pillar of the local community the unique restaurant has seen many celebrities in its time and now it’s time for the owner George Tibert to retire. Le Saint-Yves has been the meeting hub and part of the lives for the people of Saint Agnes for so long it is difficult to imagine the hilltop village without it. Its unique family run restaurant serving excellent food “à la bonne franquette” will be greatly missed. If you haven’t yet experienced the Saint-Yves then it’s well worth a visit before it disappears completely.

Business

As part of a concerted campaign to tackle soaring inflation in the country. Turkey's central bank has raised its main interest rate to 40%.  The rise, from the previous rate of 35%, was much greater than expected. But Turkey's central bank suggested rates were approaching the level required to start lowering inflation. Inflation hit 61.36% in October and is forecast to rise further and peak in May next year at around 70 to 75%.

A leading cruise ship company is being accused of a plan to fire more than 900 staff members if they do not accept new terms and conditions for their job. Carnival UK, owner of P&O Cruises and Cunard, notified authorities of the "fire and rehire" plan one day after beginning talks with union members.

And – Think tanks in the UK have warned that the cost of the tax cuts in the Autumn Statement will hit spending on public services. The Resolution Foundation said the cuts were "completely undeliverable". Downing Street has insisted that departmental spending will continue to increase in the coming years. In Wednesday's Autumn Statement, Mr Hunt said he would cut National Insurance from 12% to 10% from January, at a cost of £10bn.

Sport

Tennis - Novak Djokovic told a group of British fans to "shut up" as they tried to drown out his interview with musical instruments after their team were knocked out of the Davis Cup by Serbia. Britain lost the quarter-final 2-0 as Cameron Norrie was unable to inflict a rare defeat on the world number one. "You should learn how to show some respect," Djokovic told the fans.

Formula One - Lewis Hamilton has denied claims he approached Red Bull about a move there earlier this year. Red Bull team principal Christian Horner told reporters that there had been "an inquiry" from Hamilton. Hamilton said he "did not" contact Red Bull and Horner had reached out to him suggesting an end-of-season meeting. The 38-year-old's Mercedes contract was set to expire at the end of this season before he signed a new two-year deal in August after protracted negotiations.

Football According to reports Real Madrid are ready to splash the cash next summer after setting their sights on Paris St-Germain's France striker Kylian Mbappe.

Weather

Sunny with a moderate wind in the Alpes Maritimes and strong winds in the Var, with gust of up to 100km/hr. Highs of 17 degrees in Nice, Monaco and Saint-Tropez. 16 degrees in Marseille and 15 degrees in Puget-Théniers. This evening going down to 10 degrees along the coast and 6 degrees inland.

The outlook for the weekend, feeling a little cooler, with highs of 15 degrees, remaining fine. Strong winds in the Var on Saturday, dying down by Sunday with sunny intervals.

Sunrise       07.35am

Sunset        04.57pm

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