French and Riviera News Friday 6th January 2023

News

Justice Minister unveils 60-point plan - France’s Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti has unveiled a 60-point plan intended to redress some of the major problems in France’s justice system. The proposals are based on demands made by the legal profession and members of the public during last year’s national debate on justice reform and include the recruitment of judges, simplifying procedures, modernising civil law and the crisis in French prisons. Dupond-Moretti hopes to administer 11 billion euros in 2027. That money will go to finance pay increases, the completion of 15,000 new prison places, the modernisation of courthouses and the continuing computerisation of the profession. Ten thousand posts will be opened in the justice sector between now and 2027.

Doctors fee - France’s Minister of Health says he is ready to increase the consultation fee for GPs (General Practitioners) "as soon as the needs of the French are met". François Braun however, ruled out the possibility that the consultation fee could be increased to 50 euros, as demanded by the strikers. The Minister of Health said he was ready to increase the fee but that he wants the 650,000 French people who are chronically ill to have a doctor, because currently they don't". GPs called for action on Thursday in the French capital. The “Doctors for Tomorrow” collective, supported by several unions (FMF, UFML, SML and Young Doctors) was hoping to see several thousand demonstrators.

Climate change - According to a new study published in the science journal on Thursday 5 January. Half of the glaciers on Earth, especially the smallest of them, are doomed to disappear by the end of the century because of climate change. On the other hand, according to the publication limiting global warming as much as possible could still save others. The study gives the most accurate projections to date of the future of some 215,000 glaciers around the world. The authors warn of the importance of acting on the greenhouse gas emissions responsible for climate change, in order to limit the melting of these glaciers and its consequences, in particular on the rise in sea level and water resources.

If the rise in temperature is limited to 1.5°C above pre-industrial times (i.e., the most ambitious goal of the Paris climate agreement) then 49% of the world's glaciers will disappear by 2100. This loss will represent about 26% of the total mass of ice, because the smallest glaciers will be the first affected. The researchers estimate that the sea level will therefore rise by about 9 centimetres (an increase which will be added to that linked for example to the melting of the ice caps).

Meanwhile, scientists have expressed their annoyance after French President Emmanuel Macron said during his New Year speech “Who could have predicted the climate crisis?” hinting that the spectacular effects of global warming, of which were clearly visible in France in 2022, was an unexpected event. Scientist have indeed been warning about these risks for decades and the first IPCC report on the subject dates from 1990.

Gonfaron fire - A man in his forties has been charged as part of the investigation into the Gonfaron fire in the summer of 2021. The blaze in the Var ravaged 7,100 hectares and killed two people. The individual has been placed under judicial supervision and could face up to 7 years in prison and a fine of 100,000 euros.

Bus falls into ravine on the road to Lucéram - A bus driver has been seriously injured after the bus she was driving fell into the ravine on the road to Lucéram in the hinterland behind Nice. The incident occurred on Thursday, shortly after 7:30pm. Emergency services were quick to intervene, and the victim was taken to hospital. An investigation into the incident has since been opened.

Hospital in Frejus on the “verge of exploding” - Emergency service professionals at the hospital in Fréjus in the Var have called for help. They claim that the establishment is on the “verge of exploding” due to dozens of patients in the corridors, firefighters waiting at the entrance to A&E and overworked staff.

Speed cameras - Due to the high rate of accidents which have sometimes been fatal, on the road from Ventimiglia to France several road safety devices, including four fixed speed cameras have been set up. The move comes as the city of Ventimiglia continues to fight against dangerous driving and speeding.

Monaco Run awarded World Athletics label - The 5 km of the traditional Monaco Run has been awarded the World Athletics label. The race was founded in 2011 to replace the marathon between Ventimiglia and the Principality. This distinction rewards all the hard effort made by the team which organises the event. For information, the 2023 edition will take place on February 11 and 12. Registration is open on sport-up.fr at 18 euros. It is also possible to register on site on the day of the race for 23 euros.

Successful year for the Monaco Christmas market - You were more than 400,000 visitors to come and stroll through the Monaco Christmas market which closed its doors on Monday evening. Attendance was high this year with the town hall recording precisely 407,617 visitors over the entire period. The Christmas market included 20 food stalls, 21 sales chalets and 6 merry-go-rounds.

Meanwhile if you’re wondering where to get rid of your Christmas tree after the holidays in Monaco, collection points have been set up in different districts. There are 11 collection points open until January 31st. 

- Place Saint-Francois.

- Place Sainte-Devote.

- Promenade Honoré II (in front of the Jardins d'Apolline).

- Allée Saint Jean-Paul II.

- Esplanade Albert 1er (opposite the Casino supermarket).

- Boulevard du Larvotto (before the junction with rue du Portier).

- Place des Moulins.

- ¨Pont Sainte-Dévote (upper entrance to the SNCF station).

- Place Saint-Charles.

- Boulevard de Belgique (next to the Bosio bus stop).

- Avenue Hector Otto (Escorial).

Business

Samsung, the world's biggest maker of memory chips, smartphones and TVs, expects its profits for the last three months of 2022 to fall by 69% to the lowest level in eight years. It comes as the global economic slowdown hits memory chip prices and demand for electronic gadgets. Technology giants around the world have been hit in recent months as consumers tighten their belts. It was Samsung's lowest quarterly profit since 2014.

Hong Kong is set to lift its year-long ban on the import of hamsters later this month as it unwinds some of the world's toughest Covid restrictions. The city's Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) told the BBC the rodents would be tested for the virus. Last year officials said around 2,000 animals would be culled to stop the spread of Covid. The move came after an outbreak of infections at a pet shop.

Major high street outlets performed better than expected over the Christmas period and Next increased its profit outlook as a result, painting a positive picture for retail. Sales were up nearly 5% at Next in the nine weeks to 30 December on the same period in 2021, far outpacing the 2% reduction the retailer had forecast and £66m better than expected.

Transporters exporting goods to the European Union have faced fresh disruption since the turn of the year as a glitch in the UK's digital customs system and new demands from French authorities threaten delays. Drivers heading to ports in the first few days of January found they were unable to enter details of shipments in the government's Goods Vehicle Management System (GVMS) because it did not recognise the change in year to '2023'.

And - Rail passengers are facing a fourth day of travel disruption as thousands of workers continue to strike over jobs, pay and conditions. Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union at Network Rail and 14 other train operators will walk out on Friday in action that is set to last 48 hours.

Sport

Football - Manchester City closed the gap on Premier League leaders Arsenal to five points with victory over injury-ravaged Chelsea at Stamford Bridge winning 1-0.

Plenty of action in the FA Cup this weekend starting with Manchester United against Everton this evening kick off is at 9pm French time.

Cricket – No play Friday due to rain. In day three of five of the Test Match Series between Australia and South Africa the first innings saw Australia 475 for 4 wickets. South Africa are yet to bat.

Formula One - The American Andretti Global team have joined forces with US car giant General Motors with the intention of entering Formula 1. A joint statement said that GM would be represented by its luxury Cadillac brand should their bid be successful.

Rugby Union - Scotland fly-half Adam Hastings will miss the Six Nations with a shoulder injury. The 26-year-old requires surgery after sustaining the damage during Gloucester's defeat at Leicester on Christmas Eve.

Tennis - Emma Raducanu criticised the "slippery" courts at the ASB Classic in Auckland after retiring from her second-round match with an ankle injury. The Briton left the court in tears.  It is just 11 days before the Australian Open begins in Melbourne.

Weather

Sunny interval with highs of 16 in Nice, 15 in Monaco and 17 degrees Cannes along the coast with a light wind. This evening going down to 11 degrees and cloudy.

The outlook for tomorrow and the weekend. Light cloud on Saturday and rain is forecast for Sunday. Highs of 14-15 degrees.

Sunrise       08.03hr

Sunset        17.08hr

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