Evening News Update Wednesday 30 January

Three Riviera towns have been officially recognised as areas of natural disaster as a result of storms at the end of October last year. Cagnes-sur-Mer, Saint-Laurent-du-Var and  Villeneuve-Loubet were recognised in the decree dated December 24 and published today in the official journal of the French Republic.  Menton, however, was not named in the decree despite having suffered significant damage in the storm, including damage to the Cocteau Museum.

One person has died and four have been injured after a man opened fire on a street in Corsica. The man started firing shots in a southern district of Bastia at about 4.00 this afternoon and then barricaded himself in an apartment. A police officer is amongst the injured.

Five police officers from Marseille have been handed suspended prison sentences of six to ten months after covering up evidence for a fellow officer. In August last year three police officers were involved in a road accident. Following the hit-and-run accident five officers lowered the blood alcohol level of their colleague who was driving at the time.

Police are appealing for witnesses after a fatal accident this morning on the A7 motorway between Aix-en-Provence and Avignon. When firefighters arrived at the scene, they found a black Golf lodged under the trailer of a heavy goods vehicle. The driver of the car, a 31-year-old man from the Vaucluse, died of his injuries.

The influenza epidemic has now affected all areas of France according to the latest data from the health agency Public Health France.  The epidemic has now spread to Normandy, which until recently was the only area of the country to have been less severely affected. New health data also shows that the PACA region has one of the highest incidences of new cases of Gastroenteritis, with 258 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

An underwater search for footballer Emiliano Sala's plane will take place after cushions were found on a beach on the French coast. They were discovered near Surtainville, directly opposite Gurensey on the Cherbourg peninsula by French authorities on Monday. The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch has identified an area of four square nautical miles for a search. They said that, owing to weather and sea conditions, an underwater search is not expected to start until the end of the week and will take up to three days.


BUSINESS


French GDP rose 0.3% in the final three months of 2018, according to official figures, after a jump in exports made up for a drop in consumer spending. French exports grew by 2.5% which outpaced imports which increased by 1.6%. Household spending slowed to a standstill from 0.4% growth in the previous three months.

In the UK, Carolyn Fairbairn the head of the CBI has said that UK companies are likely to speed up plans for a no-deal Brexit in response to last night's votes in Parliament. She said a plan to renegotiate the UK's withdrawal deal "feels like a real throw of the dice". Ms Fairbairn said the reaction of businesses to the outcome of Tuesday's voting would be one of "rising frustration and concern".

Boeing has said it expects to deliver between 895 and 905 commercial aircraft in 2019, up from the 806 units it delivered last year. The company reported pre-tax profits of $4bn for the three months to 31 December, compared to $2.9bn in the same quarter the year before. Sales grew by 14%


Sales growth at Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba slowed in the third quarter amid a cooling economy and trade tensions with the US. Alibaba said sales for the three months to 31 December rose 41% but it was the weakest growth in three years.


SPORT


Football… Paris-St-Germain forward Neymar will be out for 10 weeks with a broken metatarsal, which means he will miss both legs of the club's Champions League tie against Manchester United. The Brazil forward suffered the injury in the match against Strasbourg last Wednesday.

West Ham have reportedly received an offer from Schalke to sign striker Lucas Perez. The German club want to take Perez on loan for the rest of the season with an option to buy the player next summer.

Motorsports… Mercedes have announced their new W10 Formula 1 car will have a shakedown run at Silverstone on 13 February. The private event will come before the official start of pre-season testing in Barcelona from 18 February. Mercedes have won the constructors championship for the past five years, while Lewis Hamilton won his fifth drivers title with the team in 2018.

Cricket…South Africa are playing Pakistan in the One Day International Series. Pakistan were 240 for 8 after their 50 overs.

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