Riviera and French News Thursday 15th October 2020

 

Local

Covid-19 - French President Emmanuel Macron has announced new restrictions in the fight against the spread of the coronavirus in France. Speaking on French television on Wednesday evening Macron launched a message of hope and indicated that he wanted to be transparent both on the “what we know about Covid-19 and previous failures from the government in the management of the health crisis”.

The state of the “health emergency” which ended on July 10th will be reintroduced throughout France from October 17th. Tighter measures will be introduced from Saturday 17th with a curfew from 9pm to 6am being introduced in Paris, Grenoble, Lille, Lyon, Aix-Marseille, Montpellier, Rouen, Saint-Etienne and Toulouse, affecting some 20 million people. The curfew is expected to last at least four weeks, with the Head of State warning that he would like the measures extended to six weeks until December 1st.

As far as the number of cases are concerned Marcon confirmed that there are currently 20,000 daily new case which the government aims to bring down to between 3 and 5,000. 32% of patients are currently in intensive which the government also aims to bring down to between 10-15%.

Exceptions will be made for people to circulate in the cities under curfew with proof of a valid reason. Failure to provide documented proof will result in a fine of 135 euros. However, cinemas, theatres, restaurants and other businesses "will have to close”.

There will be no restrictions on public transport or travelling between regions with people able to travel for the holiday period. Although barrier gestures and wearing a mask must be respected at all times.

The French are advised to limit private gatherings to six people.

Partial unemployment at 100% will be reintroduced for sectors in difficulty such as hotels, cafes, restaurants, tourism, events culture and sport until the end of the year. There will be an exceptional aid of 150 euros with an additional 100 euros per child for those on welfare benefit.

There was no call for companies to set up working remotely, as was the case during the national lockdown, for fear of re-isolating people. The President said "Everyone must be present as much as possible however, we do encourage people, for jobs where it is relevant, to do two or three days of telework per week".

A new version of the StopCovid application will be launched in October 22nd under “TousAntiCovid’ and self-tests will soon be available announced the Head of State.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex is to hold a press conference today to unveil further details.

Storm Alex - The Nice prosecutor has announced that five victims of storm Alex, which hit the Alpes Maritimes on Friday, October 2 have been returned to their families after formal identification. To date the provisional death toll of those missing in the disaster now stands at 13 people.

Homeless man offered job by Nice city council - Meanwhile the city council in Nice has offered a job to Jojo a 52-year-old homeless man from Nice who has given all his savings to the victims of storm Alex.

Jojo who sleeps on the steps of the museum of modern and contemporary art in Nice, where he earns a small income from selling the newspaper "Solidarité 06" says the job offer is the “beginning of a new life for him”.

After the passage of storm Alex in the Alpes-Maritimes, Jojo wanted to make a contribution and donated his savings of 150 euros.

National 

National plan to combat hatred and discrimination against LGBT - The French government has unveiled a national plan to combat hatred and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people (LGBT), which emphasises the importance of inclusive education in stamping out homophobia.

The three-year plan was unveiled on Wednesday and aims to make members of the LGBT community "citizens in their own right".

Allosaurus sold in Paris - A rare Allosaurus skeleton has sold at a Paris auction house for 3 million euros. Standing 11 feet high and 33 feet long, the figure is one of the largest of its species ever discovered.

The Allosaurus, known as the grandfather of the T-rex, roamed the earth around 150 million years ago.

This comes one week after another historic dinosaur sale. Stan the T-rex fetched nearly $32 million dollars at Christie's auction house, smashing initial estimates and setting a record for the most expensive dinosaur fossil ever sold.

Business

Asian markets have been mixed today as hopes for a further US stimulus package before the Presidential election faded and several European countries tightened restrictions as a result of a surge of new coronavirus cases.

Investors have been moving towards safe-havens including gold which has risen by 1 percent this morning.

Downbeat comments from the US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin about the chances of a new Covid-19 stimulus package before the election have added to negative sentiment as authorities in several European nations said that they were expecting a surge in coronavirus cases with tough new restrictions introduced in the UK ,France and Germany.

Trade tensions between the US and China are also still on investors minds with Brexit talks also being tracked as EU leaders meet for a summit in Brussels today.

Brent Crude was trading up 2.2 percent a little earlier at 43 dollars 37 with West Texas Intermediate up 2.2 percent at 41 dollars.

The European Union is set to reject a request by the UK for special allowances on exports of electric cars in a post-Brexit trade deal.

A draft addition to the deal states that electric and hybrid vehicles will only get zero tariffs if a majority of their components’ value is from the two areas.

Even if there is a deal ,some UK car exports to the EU will not be eligible and 10 percent tariffs will apply from the 1st of January.

Last month , the UK floated the idea that in the case of hybrid or electric vehicles ,only a minority of parts would at first need to be either from the UK or the EU and up to 70 percent could come from elsewhere.

The request had been made by key car export factories , which are dependent on electric batteries ,hybrid systems and other technology mainly manufactured in Japan.

The EU’s Product Specific Rules of Origin is expected to demand that the maximum content of non-originating materials should be set at 45 percent of the ex-works price of the vehicle.

 

And-UK banks have been told that they must not cause “undue financial hardship” to customers in the EU when closing accounts because of Brexit related problems.

Thousands of ,mainly British residents in Europe have been told that their bank accounts will be closed because of Brexit.

The UK Financial Conduct Authority has now warned banks that they must give at least two months notice of plans to close any accounts in credit.

The FCA says that some banks have not been properly informing customers although its been stressed that not all UK banks are planning to shut accounts.

UK banks will lose passporting rights allowing them to trade freely in the EU after the first of January and some have decided that it’s not in their commercial interests to continue to offer services inside the single market.

Sport

Football-Harry McGuire’s problems have intensified after he was sent off during England’s 1-0 home defeat at the hands of Denmark in last night’s Nations League game.

The Manchester United defender was dismissed on 31 minutes for a reckless challenge after having already been booked.

Christian Erikson scored Denmark’s winner from the penalty spot on 34 minutes after Kyle Walker was adjudged to have fouled Thomas Delaney inside the box and England’s night of misery was competed when Reece James was sent off after the final whistle for confronting the referee.

In other results last night-France were 2-1 away winners in Croatia in Group A3. Norway beat Northern Ireland 1-0 in Group B1 .Scotland’s excellent run of form continued with a 1-0 win over the Czech Republic in Group B2 .Finland beat the Republic of Ireland 1-0 in Group B4 and Wales had a great 1-0 away win in Bulgaria also in Group B4.

Rugby Union-4 Wasps players have tested positive for Covid-19 ahead of the Premiership final against Exeter on October the 24th.

3 members of the coaching staff have also tested positive but the club says that all are in “good overall health”.

Training has been cancelled for the rest of the week as a precaution.

Cycling-Arnaud Demare of France has won his 4th stage in this year’s Giro d’Italia with victory at the end of the 182 kilometer ride from Porto Sant’Elpidio to Rimini.

Demare won stage 11 in a sprint finish with Joao Almeida of Portugal retaining the overall lead with a 34 second advantage over Wilco Keldeman of the Netherlands.

Demare is the first Frenchman to win 4 stages of the same race since Bernard Hinault in 1982.

Weather

Partially cloudy with light variable winds.

Top temperatures 18-19 degrees.

Overnight lows of 13 degrees on the coast and 9 degrees inland with partially cloudy skies.

Friday and the start of the weekend-Partially cloudy with highs of 18-19 degrees.

And Finally

A burglar who left behind a rucksack containing his name and address at the scene of a crime has been jailed for four years.

Malcolm Pyke, 43, broke into a garage in East Herrington, Sunderland, and stole £150 of cleaning equipment.

As he was making his getaway, he accidentally left behind a bag which contained letters bearing both his name and address.

This information helped lead police officers to his home, where the stolen equipment had been left out in the open.

The stolen equipment has been returned to its rightful owner.

 

 

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