French and Riviera News Thursday 26th May 2022

News

French government to consider not deducting points from driving license for “small speeding” offences - France’s Interior Ministry is considering no longer deducting points from a driving license for "small speeding fines". A ministry spokesperson said that the idea is that “you no longer lose a point if you are 5 km / h over the authorised speed you are however still fined. In 2020, of the 12.5 million fines for speeding checked by speed cameras, 58% concerned excesses of less than 5 km / h.  

French minister will not be investigated at this stage - The Paris prosecutor’s office has said that it will not open an investigation, at this stage, following accusation of rape against France’s newly appointed Solidarity Minister Damien Abad. The reason is reportedly due to “lack of information allowing the victim of the facts to be identified and, therefore, unable of proceeding to a hearing". Since the accusations appeared, Damien Abad has dismissed the charges.

Sainte Maxime World Oceans Day - The town of Sainte Maxime in the Var, is calling for volunteers to come and participate in cleaning the beaches on June 8th as part of World Oceans Day. June 8th is World Oceans Day. Last year, the city participated seeing major cleaning and waste collection operation.

Heavy traffic - Bison Futé has warned of heavy traffic jams on the region’s roads today due to the long weekend break. Today Thursday 26th May is classified as red throughout France and it’s advisable to avoid the A8 motorway, between Aix-en-Provence and Fréjus, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Friday and Saturday are expected to be easier, but the situation will deteriorate on Sunday which is classified as a black day as everyone rreturns to head back to work on Monday. The main advice is to return to big cities before noon and in our region to avoid the A8 motorway, between Fréjus and Aix-en-Provence, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Fine weather across France for long weekend - And Meteo France has forecast fine weather across France for the Ascension weekend, the only long weekend in May this year. Temperatures are expected to continue to rise especially around the Mediterranean with up to 31°C in Marseille.

Cannes Film Festival - The red carpet of the film "Elvis" at the 75th Cannes Film Festival attracted many famous faces on Wednesday including American actor Tom Hanks. The film directed by Baz Lurhmann is being presented out of competition. In 'Elvis,' viewers will only have eyes for Austin Butler, who takes on the challenge of playing the 'King' who died at age 42 in 1977.

Emmanuel Macron arrives in Brégançon - French President Emmanuel Macron has arrived in Brégançon in the Var. The President of the Republic will spend the Ascension weekend at Fort Brégançon a tradition for the bank holiday weekend amongst French Presidents.

Business

After a very volatile session, the Paris Stock Exchange finally closed sharply higher on Wednesday. After starting up, the CAC 40 weakened until spending some time in negative territory at the start of the afternoon. But the index recovered in the afternoon to conclude with an increase of 0.73%, narrowly failing to reach 6300 points, ending at 6,298.64 points. A rebound, however, insufficient to make up for the delay on Tuesday evening (-1.7%). The U.S. central bank will be the focus of attention as investors debate whether it intends to continue to deliver rate hikes in 0.5 point increases to tame inflation.

The Irish Prime Minister Micheál Martin has said that a UK-EU trade war would be "shocking" and "unnecessary". He called on the UK government to "get into the tunnel and negotiate" over changes to the post-Brexit trade arrangements for Northern Ireland. The UK government last week announced plans to override key parts of the Brexit deal within weeks. Boris Johnson's government agreed the trade deal with the EU in 2019 after the UK voted to leave the bloc.

Volkswagen is to pay £193m to more than 90,000 drivers in England and Wales after it settled a High Court claim over the installation of emissions cheating devices in its vehicles.

The German carmaker apologised again to customers and said it was working to rebuild trust. The "dieselgate" scandal erupted in 2015 and has led to VW facing litigation in several countries. The group has already paid out more than €30bn (£26bn) worldwide.

Dyson is moving beyond vacuum cleaners and hand driers and will try to develop robots capable of helping with household chores. The company has announced plans to create a major robotics centre at its facility in Wiltshire, that will work on new types of domestic robot. The site will be home to 250 robotics engineers. Dyson already produces robotic vacuum cleaners.

Sport

Football – Roma became the first winners of the Europa Conference League after beating Feyenoord 1-0 and ensuring Jose Mourinho remains unbeaten in major European finals.

And Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah says he will be at Anfield next season "for sure" but would not be drawn over whether he will sign a new contract.

Rugby - Congratulations to AS Monaco Rugby which goes up to Federal 2, a first for the club. A major achievement for the club which was still in the 4th series 10 years ago.

MONACO GRAND PRIX

Speaking ahead of the 79th Monaco Grand Prix formula one driver Charles Leclerc has said that he doesn’t believe in bad luck”. Leclerc in F1 since 2018 has never crossed the finishing line here at his home in Monaco. 

Meanwhile preparations are underway Formula 1 practice sessions are on Friday, qualifying sessions on Saturday and the race itself on Sunday afternoon at 3pm. But as well as the Formula 1 action, there are several other races as well, including Formula 2, the Porsche Mobil Supercup and the Formula Regional by Alpine taking place today. The track closes to normal traffic at 10am this morning and the Alpine Practice session begins at 2pm, with the Porsche Mobil Supercup practice session at 3.35pm and Formula 2 practice session at 5.0pm5. The track reopens to traffic at 7.30pm.

Weather

Cloud and long sunny periods. Light winds. Highs of 27 degrees along the coast in Monaco, Nice, Cannes and Saint Tropez. 28 degrees inland. This evening going down to 17 degrees with clear skies.

Outlook for tomorrow and the Monaco Grand Prix weekend. Hazy sunshine to start, clear skies by Friday afternoon. Fine on Saturday highs of 27 degrees. However, possibility of showers on Sunday afternoon and feeling cooler with highs of 23 degrees.

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