Lunchtime News Thursday 25th March 2021


Emmanuel Macron admits to sluggish start to vaccination campaign - Speaking on Greek television the French President Emmanuel Macron has admitted that the EU had not believed soon enough in the vaccination against Covid, unlike the Americans. The confession was made by the Head of State during the interview broadcast on Wednesday March 24th.

Press conference - France’s Minister of Health Olivier Véran, is due to hold a press conference later today. At 6pm the minister is expected to take stock of the health situation and announce new measures.

The tension is increasing in the hospital services of Hauts-de-France with the Regional Health Agency confirming that the number of Covid patients treated in intensive care "is higher than the second wave and at a level comparable to the first".

Meanwhile France’s former Director General of Health William Dab has declared on French television this morning that "the epidemic is out of control" and that there was "hardly any other solution than a hard and long lockdown”. He also is in favour of a suggestion made by the president of the Ile de-France region, on starting the school holidays two weeks earlier.

Bouches-du-Rhone and the Var appears to have escaped the introduction of tougher measures against Covid-19 –The French government is not expected to announce new health measures for the Bouches-du-Rhône and the Var as both regions have seemingly once again escaped the tightening of health measures.

Following Wednesday’s defence council it was announced that in today’s press conference on the pandemic in France three additional departments will be put under a full lockdown; the Aube, Nièvre and the Rhône. However, the Bouches-du-Rhône and Var have not been mentioned. To date, sixteen departments have been subject to reinforced restriction measures since Saturday. In our region, only the Alpes Maritimes is concerned.

According to the regional health agency for the PACA region viral circulation is not weakening with the 5th crisis level plan being activated in hospitals. On Wednesday, 1,466 people were hospitalized, 503 people are in critical care and about fifty patients have been evacuated to Occitanie, Brittany and New Aquitaine since February 24th.

Traders in Cannes, Menton and Antibes allowed to set up stalls in front of their shops - To help businesses Cannes, Menton and Antibes have allowed traders to set up stands in front of their shops, despite the lockdown measures. Wearing a mask, barrier gestures, and a ban on customers entering the premises are the conditions to be respected.

The measure was introduced following approval from the prefecture, it was the town of Menton which first launched similar measures, an initiative in force since March 23rd. The objective is to promote the sale of small businesses while respecting health measures

Residents in Cap d’Ail at their wits end - An Airbnb rental in Cap d’Ail has been holding regular late-night parties with residents at their wit’s end. For nearly a year now the residents of an apartment block have been subject to noise pollution and incivism. The building which has a few dozen permanent residents out of the 175 apartments, has witnessed mini discos taking place despite the current restrictions in place due to the health crisis.

Speed cameras - Ten new speed cameras are soon to be installed in the Alpes-Maritimes. The cameras are to be installed in Cannes, Nice, Cagnes-sur-Mer, Théoule-sur-Mer, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin and Vallauris. Meanwhile two cameras which were out of order have recently been repaired and reinstalled on the RM6098 in Saint-Laurent-du-Var, on the RM6098, and near Crémat, on the A8 motorway.

“I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice-cream” - Faced with an unprecedented health crisis, it would appear that French have sought comfort in sweet desserts and in particular in ice creams, which last year saw 171,000 tonnes sold.

Like cheese, another “comfort” food for the French according to figures from the Association of Ice Cream Companies, carried out by the Nielsen firm, the ice cream sector experienced revenue growth of 10.3% to 1.26 billion euros. This represents 171.8 million kilos of ice cream sold in 2020. In total, more than 24 million households have consumed ice cream, an additional 440,000 buyers compared to 2019.

Norman version of the “attestation” - If you thought that the attestation forms were complicated enough, in the Seine-Maritime and the Eure, they have issued the certificate in the regional language and it’s completely legal. The Normandy Regional Council announced the posting of a Norman-language version of the attestation on Tuesday.

The Eure and Seine-Maritime, are among the 16 departments under stricter health measures put in place on Friday March 19th and the document can be downloaded from the region's website. The Normandy Regional Council has welcomed the move adding that "the health situation should not make us forget the culture and history of our region as well as add a little humour”.


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