Lunchtime News Tuesday 8th March 2022


Macron pledges to abolish television license fee - Speaking at his first public appearance as candidate for the 2022 Presidential elections in France, French President Emmanuel Macron has pledged to get rid of the television license fee if re-elected. During a visit to Poissy on Monday, Macron also announced an increase of the “Macron bonus” which currently allows companies to pay up to 1,000 euros without charges or tax. Since 2009, the contribution to public broadcasting has been payable by anyone who is subject to housing tax and who owns a television. Its amount is determined by Parliament and currently stands at 138 euros. The fee is used to finance public sector TV and radio channels, such as France Télévisions, Radio France, Arte or France Médias Monde (France 24, RFI, etc.). Macron emphasised that there is no intention to privatise this service planning to account for its cost within the government budget.

Macron also said that he will not be participating in any "debate with the other candidates before the first round of the elections". Meanwhile on Monday the President of the French Constitutional Council confirmed that there will be twelve candidates in the first round of the Presidential election.

International Women’s Day - As today marks International Women’s Day a report published by the High Council for Gender Equality has shown that daily sexism persists. Whether it be at home, at work or in public transport, sexism remains anchored in the daily life of women in France. The report highlights "alarming" figures with six out of ten French women saying they have been subjected to a sexist act or remarks in the street and transport, 46% of the women questioned have experienced sexist acts at work, and 43% are victims.

Paris-Venice – A new railway company has announced plans to start a service in mid-2024 with a daily round trip between Paris and Venice. The new Midnight Trains rail company wants to launch high-end night trains in priority on Paris-Venice, Paris-Nice and Paris-Barcelona. Midnight Trains has said it wants to start its service from June 1st, 2024 with a daily round trip between Paris and Venice in fourteen hours, via Dijon, Milan, Brescia, Verona, Padua and Mestre. The company then wants to launch night services Paris-Nice via Dijon, Marseille-Blancarde, Toulon, Les Arcs, Saint-Raphaël, Cannes and Antibes, and Paris-Barcelona via Dijon, Perpignan, Figueras and Girona.

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