French and Riviera News Thursday 9th March 2023

News

Train traffic disruptions due to continued strike action - Train traffic is expected to be heavily disrupted today Thursday 9th March, as the strike action against the pension reform rolls on. All the unions have called for a renewable strike. One out of three TGV, Inoui and Ouigo will circulating and one in four intercities with the cancellation of night trains. On average two out of five TER trains will be running and as for international connections, three out of four Eurostars are planned. The SNCF has warned that traffic will remain disrupted on Friday recommending that passengers cancel or postpone their trips scheduled for Thursday and Friday. TGV and Intercités customers can exchange their ticket free of charge or get a refund, whether or not their train is running.

Meanwhile, French unions have called for further general industrial action this Saturday, the 11th of March as well as on either the 14th or 15th, which is expected to be the time at which a parliamentary committee will vote on the proposed pension reforms.

Oranges removed from French supermarkets - Oranges from Tunisia have been removed from supermarkets across France due to the presence of a pesticide banned in the European Union since 2020. The citrus fruits in question were sold in nets of 1.5 and 2 kilos, as well as in bulks, from February 10th to the 20th, in Auchan, Cora, Intermarché, Leclerc, Match and Système U. If you have purchased this product, you are requested to stop consuming it and return it to the point of sale for a refund. The pesticide used was banned in January 2020 after links to being a risk to human health were confirmed by the European Food Safety Agency.

SNCF opens sale of tickets for this summer - Train tickets for this summer have gone on sale with passengers able to purchase tickets on any SNCF operated lines for July and August. To purchase your French rail tickets, you can do so via SNCF Connect, either on the application or website. For high speed TGV lines and Intercités, you can book through to September 3rd, and for Ouigo services through to December. Some tickets have gone up in price for 2023 however booking early allows you to benefit from better deals.

Rally in Monaco on International Women’s Day - "Women are not just laying hens" were the words from women who have gathered at a rally on the Place d’Armes here in Monaco on International Women’s Day. The rally was held in support of Iranian women who, in the constitution of their country, are worth "half a man". Florence Granero, Monegasque of Iranian origin initiated the rally and was joined by representatives of the Town Hall, the Zonta Club Monaco, the Iranian community and the Committee for the Promotion and Protection of Women's Rights.

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco to visit the Var tomorrow - H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco will visit the Var tomorrow Friday 10th March. The Prince will be welcomed by the mayor of Ollioules the "city of flowers and olive trees" which has strong ties with the Principalility. Mayor Robert Beneventi and the prefect of Var, Evence Richard will join the Prince to unveil a plaque and then the Prince and his delegation will attend a short ceremony at the Saint-Laurent church in memory of Charles Grimaldi of Antibes-Cagnes, Bishop of Rodez, who was buried there in 1770.

Commemorative stamps - This year’s Monaco Grand Prix marks its 80th edition and to celebrate the world-renowned event what better way than to release a set of commemorative stamps. The 80th edition of the Monaco Grand Prix takes place from the 25th to the 28th of May and from March 7th the Monaco Stamp Office has made three of the new stamps available featuring mythical cars and their drivers. The stamps are available at the Stamp Office here in the Principality as well as in post offices and other specialised traders.

Summer job - If you’re looking for a job this summer, the town hall of Roquebrune-Cap-Martin is recruiting lifeguards. The position is based at the Nursery School on the beach of Roquebrune-Cap-Martin. It’s a full-time position for the summer and candidates must have experience as well as the necessary qualifications. Applications can be sent to the attention of the mayor at www.ressource.humane@mairiercm.fr

Monegasque marathon record - Sonny Folcheri has broken the Monegasque marathon record by completing the Tokyo Marathon in 2h 44m and 45s. Breaking his own record and the country's national record he has now become the fastest Monegasque marathon runner. He has also now become part of the Six Star Finishers which brings together runners who crossed the finish line of the marathons in New York, Berlin, London, Boston, Chicago and Tokyo. A club which brings together just over 8,000 runners worldwide, including a few very rare Monegasques. A graduate of AS Monaco Athlétisme, Sonny Folcheri took up running thirteen years ago and is used to training on the Monegasque coast or the seaside of Cap-d'Ail and Roquebrune -Cap-Martin.

Business

Following a similar move made by the US the Dutch government has announced that it plans to put restrictions on the country's "most advanced" chip exports to protect its national security. The restrictions are expected to be put in place before the summer. The move will include technology produced by computer chip equipment maker ASML, one of the most important firms in the global microchip supply chain. Semiconductors, which power everything from mobile phones to military hardware, are at the centre of a bitter dispute between the US and China.

Meanwhile the boss of one of the UK's leading microchip firms is calling for the government to invest "hundreds of millions" in the sector warning that without a huge funding boost UK firms will go abroad. The government said it would soon publish its strategy to improve access to skills, facilities and tools. It comes as a new report says the UK government "must act now to secure the future of the vital UK semiconductor industry".

Adidas are still unsure of what to do with the €1.2bn (£1bn) worth of shoes from Kanye West's Yeezy line after the sportswear giant ended its partnership with the rapper last year. Adidas boss Bjorn Gulden said the firm is considering selling the footwear and donating the profits to charity. He said he had ruled out other options, such as burning them. Giving them away for free is also complicated he added, noting that the resale value of the shoes has surged. A pair of Yeezy 350 "Zebra" shoes is now selling for between $340 and $360, compared to around $260 four months ago.

Sport

Football - Paris St-Germain's 11th consecutive attempt at winning the Champions League ended in more misery as Bayern Munich dumped them out in the first knockout round 3-0 on aggregate, with Wednesday’s 2-0 win in Germany.

Meanwhile it was a goalless draw against AC Milan last night which confirmed Tottenham Hotspur’s exit at the last-16 stage of the Champions League.

Formula One - Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes "didn't listen" to him over the development of their 2023 Formula 1 car. The seven-time champion finished fifth in the season-opening Bahrain GP as the team made another poor start.

Tennis - British qualifier Katie Swan lost on her debut in the Indian Wells main draw after she was unable to take her chances against Spain's Cristina Bucsa. Swan, who came through qualifying on her debut at the BNP Paribas Open, lost 7-6 (8-6) 7-5 to 90th-ranked Bucsa.

Weather

Sunny with a gentle breeze. Highs of 19 degrees in Monaco, 20 degrees in Nice and reaching 22 degrees in Cannes. This evening going down to 10 degrees with clear skies.

18 degrees in Saint Tropez and Toulon with sunshine and a moderate breeze. 17 degrees in Marseille. This evening going down to 6 degrees.

The outlook for tomorrow and heading into the weekend. Fine and sunny with strong winds across the region and highs of 18-21 degrees.

Sunrise 06.53am

Sunset  06.28pm

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