French and Riviera News Wednesday 3rd November 2021

News

COP26 HSH Prince Albert II Monaco expresses regret adding "there is still time to act" - As 120 political leaders gather in Glasgow for COP 26, climate summit, HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco addressed the world leaders on Tuesday, expressing his regret that "we are not yet up to the commitments made in the Paris Agreement or up to the climate challenge". The Sovereign remained hopeful about our capacity for collective action saying: "Thankfully, there is still time to act. There is still time to limit global warming to 1.5°C, a threshold that the IPCC has shown us is a limit. There is still time to develop another energy model, which is the only way to guarantee our common future." The Sovereign Prince said that today "solutions do exist, which protect nature and bring progress to humanity. We must now develop them together, in our countries and beyond, in all the seas of the world."

Wearing a mask extended in the Alpes Maritimes - The obligation to wear a mask in certain places has been extended by order of the prefecture of the Alpes-Maritimes. The prefecture has extended the obligation until 16th November inclusive, from eleven years of age in the following public spaces of all the communes of the department:

- Covered and open-air markets.

- Public spaces usually open to the public 

- Urban roads and town centres. 

- Shopping malls and similar spaces of large and medium-sized supermarkets, as well as their car parks.

- Within a perimeter of 50 metres around the entrances to nurseries, schools, colleges and lycées.

- Within a perimeter of 50 metres around the entrances of establishments open to the public in which the wearing of masks is compulsory.

- In establishments, places and events whose access is subject to the presentation of the health pass.

If distancing of at least two meters is possible, the mask is not mandatory in the following public spaces:

- natural areas, urban green spaces (parks, gardens), river banks and coastal areas such as beaches.

According to Public Health France in the Alpes-Maritimes, the incidence rate was above the alert threshold at 62.9 cases per 100,000 inhabitants and the positivity rate at 1.5% for the week of October 23 to 29.

Meanwhile following the decision from the prefecture announced on Tuesday 2nd November the mayor of Cannes David Lisnard has said he is against the extension of wearing a mask outdoors referring to it as an "inept and ineffective measure".

Two nurses assaulted at Pasteur hospital - The trade unionist at the Pasteur Hospital in Nice will today Wednesday 3rd November, demand the holding of an extraordinary CHSCT meeting to discuss the working conditions of hospital staff after two nurses were verbally and physically assaulted. Both were working in the A&E department at the time of the attacks.

Mayor of Draguignan says the problem is just being moved to Fréjus, Brignoles or Toulon - Meanwhile following the closure of the A&E department at the hospital of Draguignan last week the mayor Richard Strambio has said that "the problem is not being solved but just moved to neighbouring hospitals in Fréjus, Brignoles or Toulon". Faced with a critical lack of hospital staff, and the exhaustion of current staff, since Friday evening the hospital has closed its emergency department at night, from 8:30 pm to 8:30 am.

Road accident in La Gaude - A motorist has been seriously injured in a road accident in La Gaude. The accident occurred on Tuesday morning shortly after 8am when a car collided with a motorcycle on the road from Gattières to La Gaude. Police have opened an investigation to determine the cause of the crash.

Migrant electrified at Menton train station - A young migrant has been electrified and seriously injured while climbing on the roof of a train at the train station in Menton. The incident occurred last Friday. According to the prosecutor of the Republic in Nice the victim fell after being electrocuted by the power cables of the train. He was taken to hospital in Nice and has since been transferred to the burns department of Marseille.

Operation continues in port of Fontvieille - Maritime authorities are still trying to retrieve a 16-metre boat which sank in the port of Fontvieille in Monaco, polluting the port at the weekend. Operations are expected to continue today Wednesday 3rd November.

Airbnb announces booking blocks for New Year's Eve - Airbnb has announced the renewal of its "anti-party" plan in apartments rented for the New Year. The platform made the announcement on Tuesday, November 2nd adding that the objective was to prevent disruptions during the New Year and prioritise the protection of hosts, indicating that it would be forbidden to make a reservation for only the night of New Year's Eve.

On last year's New Year Airbnb had already introduced restrictions. These measures had made it possible to block 64,000 reservations in France. The same system will be extended this year in Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand.

Transdev to operate train line between Marseille and Nice - The CEO of Transdev Thierry Mallet has said that the price of a train ticket will not change following the take over of the TER line between Marseille, Toulon and Nice. Transdev has broken the historic monopoly of the SNCF in France by being granted the operation of the line with the first Transdev trains operating from 2025. The travel time will not change either taking 2 hours and 38 minutes. Mallet pointed out that while the trains are able to go faster at 200km hour the state of the current line does not allow it with substantial work required in order to change this. To date Transdev operates in 17 countries, mostly in bus lines or urban transport.

La Garde-Freinet presents project for village centre- The town council of La Garde-Freinet in the Var has presented its draft project for the village centre between the tourist office and the intersection of Rue Longue. A public meeting is to take place this evening about the future work for the village, which has until now been displayed at the town hall.

Nicolas Sarkozy refuses to answer questions - Summoned as a witness on Tuesday, France's former head of state Nicolas Sarkozy went to court but refused to answer questions, in the name of his presidential immunity. Sarkozy appeared in court where he was summoned as a witness in the context of the trial of the election polls of the Elysee. Former members of Sarkozy's close team have been on trial since October 18 for "concealment", "favouritism" or "embezzlement of public funds by negligence".

SMS sent by Emmanuel Macron - Meanwhile the entourage of the French president Emmanuel Macron have denounced "unacceptable methods" following the leak on Tuesday, November 2, of an SMS sent by Emmanuel Macron to Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on the mega-submarine contract. The Australian press reported on an SMS from Emmanuel Macron sent to the Australian two days before the termination of the contract, in mid-September. The French president asked him, in English: "Should I expect good or bad news for our joint ambition on submarines?"

This leak suggests that the French president would have been aware of a threat to the contract before the official announcement of its termination. 

The leak could be an Australian response to the French president's statement on Sunday, who said he "knew" that Scott Morrison had lied to him by hiding his intention to break the €55 billion contract, on the pretext of a change in strategy in favour of nuclear-powered submarines.

Women working for free from today - According to the feminist newsletter Les Glorieuses, women begin "working for free" from today at 9:22am due to persistent wage inequality, This date and time were calculated, as every year since 2015, from European statistics on the wage gap between women and men in France. This year, the difference reaches 16.5%, compared to 15.5% last year.

Business

Facebook has announced it will no longer use facial recognition software to identify faces in photographs and videos. There have been growing concerns about the ethics of facial recognition technology, with questions raised over privacy, racial bias, and accuracy. Until now, users of the social media app could choose to opt in to the feature which would scan their face in pictures and notify them if someone else on the platform had posted a picture of them.

A British woman has won a legal battle against Australia's so-called "backpacker tax", in a ruling that may have implications for other travellers. Catherine Addy argued she was unfairly taxed on pay she earned while working as a waitress in Sydney in 2017. The tax - imposed that year - had discriminated against her on the basis of her nationality, she said. Other backpackers affected by the same rule have been waiting on the decision by Australia's highest court. They may now be able to ask Australian authorities to review their tax assessments.

French Parliament has adopted a bill to reduce the environmental footprint of digital and validates the Private Copying "Tax" on recycling products. Parliament adopted on Tuesday, by a final vote of the Senate, a bill aimed at reducing the environmental footprint of digital technology, making France a pioneer in this field. The move includes measures aimed in particular at supporting the recycling and reuse of digital devices (smartphones, computers, tablets, etc.) to reduce their impact on the environment.

Between July and September, Ferrari saw its deliveries increase by 19% compared to 2020 and by 11% compared to 2019, before the pandemic. Posting a net profit up 21% to 207 million euros on Tuesday the figure exceeds the consensus of analysts established by Factset who expected 188 million euros.

According to a study by the strategy consulting firm OC & C, consumers are clinging to safe values. Amazon is no longer one of the ten favourite brands of the French in 2021 as the e-commerce giant ranked only in the ninth position. Picard regains the top of the ranking, which had not happened since 2014, followed by Decathlon. Leroy Merlin rose to third place, favoured by the enthusiasm of the French for DIY and furniture during the health crisis and the various lockdowns.

Sport

Football - Former Fifa officials Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini have been charged with fraud and other offences in Switzerland. Swiss prosecutors say Mr Blatter unlawfully arranged a transfer of two million Swiss francs ($2.19m; £1.6m) to Mr Platini in 2011. Mr Blatter and Mr Platini now face trial. If found guilty of the charges, the pair could receive prison sentences of several years or fines.

In the Champions League this evening Manchester City play Club Bruges and Liverpool against Atletico Madrid.

Cricket - Pakistan have secured their place in the Men's T20 World Cup semi-finals. They will now face Scotland in their final group game on Sunday.

Formula One – Pirelli says it is on target to deliver the more durable and raceable tyres Formula 1 has requested to accompany next year's new cars. F1 has asked for tyres that allow drivers to push hard throughout races as part of a plan to promote closer racing in 2022.

Tennis - Novak Djokovic marked his return to the singles court with a hard-fought win in his Paris Masters opener.

Weather

Light rain with a gentle breeze. High of 16 degrees in Menton, Monaco and Nice. This evening going down to 7 degrees with clear skies.

The outlook for Thursday and Friday - Sunny with clear skies and highs of between 16-18 degrees.

And Finally

Scientists now say that drinking one glass of wine with dinner every night probably won't stave off an early death. For years a number of studies have suggested light alcohol consumption has health benefits.   But German academics tasked with reviewing the evidence on the topic believe the claims are wrong. 

They say previous studies showing teetotallers have a higher risk of dying compared to moderate drinkers may have failed to consider other damaging factors like past alcohol abuse. 

 

 

 

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