Evening Update 04 Oct

Ammend - Speeding fines are up 50% in the last three years, with the government expected to collect €1.23 billion in fines this year alone. Motoring organisations blame the lowering of the 90 km/h limit on secondary roads for the increase, while on the Riviera, weary motorists are beginning to express outrage at the dropping of the motorway speed limit on the A8. That’s been reduced from 100 km/h to 90 between Cagnes-sur-mer and St-Laurent-du-Var with radar speed cameras already in frequent operation.

Top Cop - After the Mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi turned down the position of Minister of the Interior, speculation is mounting as to why President Macron is finding it so hard the fill the position … … and the real reason behind Gérard Collomb’s departure. The Government has said a new Interior Minister, often called France’s ‘top cop’, will be announced soon. In the meantime, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe will also serve in that role.

Demo - Over a hundred retired people demonstrated on Place Garibaldi in Nice, to protest budget changes that will leave them out of pocket. They are demanding the government compensate them for loss of purchasing power, where tax changes will see them up to €400 a year worse off.

Award - The best Belgian beer, is brewed in St Tropez! At the World Beer Awards, in London, Blonde of St Tropez took the Gold Medal for “Belgium Best Pale Beer 2018” as well as Gold for “Best Bottle Design”

BUSINESS 

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is working on a proposal that could see her seek an all-U.K. customs union with the European Union, a plan with has received the tacit backing of Ireland for such a post-Brexit deal.  The scenario could take effect if no other solution to the Irish border issue is found before Brexit, where the U.K. would stay within a customs union until trade deal is finalized.

Facebook is to face a formal investigation by the Irish Data Protection Commissioner into the data breach of 50 million accounts last week. If found to be in breach, Facebook could face a near €2 billion fine from the EU.

Honda is to invest $2.75bn in General Motors' self-driving unit, as car manufacturers continue to team up in the race to develop autonomous vehicles. The Japanese carmaker said it wanted to develop a self-driving car that could be mass produced. Meanwhile, in the UK, new September cars sales are down 20% year-on-year in a worrying sign for Brexit.

SPORT

Football - Cristiano Ronaldo has not been named in the Portugal squad for this month's internationals against Poland and Scotland. His absence for the two games comes after the player was accused of a rape in Las Vegas in 2009, which he strenuously denies.

Gareth Southgate has signed a new three million a year contract, which will see him remain as England boss until the 2022 World Cup. His previous deal was due to end after Euro 2020, but changed after he led England to the World Cup semi-finals during the summer for the first time in 28 years.

Formula 1 - Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas says, he has been told he could be asked again, to cede position to Lewis Hamilton until the drivers' championship is decided. The Finn was asked to move over for his team-mate to win last weekend's Russian Grand Prix, which took Hamilton closer towards a fifth world title. Bottas said Mercedes had made it clear they may ask him to do it again but that any decision would be made on a case-by-case basis.

Tennis - Angelique Kerber is out of the China Open after losing in three sets to China's Zhang Shuai. The Wimbledon champion won just seven points in the third set as she lost 6-1 2-6 6-Luv. Zhang will next face Japan's Naomi Osaka, the current US Open champion, in the quarter-finals.

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