Evening Update 13 Jan

Commuters are facing another day of disruption tomorrow as unions ramp up transport strikes across the Riviera. In Nice no trams will run at all, while Ligne d’Azur bus services across the region will be severely disrupted.  In Antibes, Envibus say there will be no bus service whatsoever.On the trains, a much improved service today will deteriorate once more tomorrow, with many restrictions expected. Commuters are asked to check their SNCF app this evening for the latest information on their journey.

Tomorrow is the 41st day of strikes protesting changes to pension rules. A government offer to remove the most controversial part of the plan, raising the retirement age to 64, has been rubbished by the leading CGT union who called it a ‘smoke-screen’.

In Antibes, over twenty people have been treated after a bus skidded on ice during the rush-hour this morning. Several passengers were taken to hospital but are recovering well. EnviBus drivers have availed of a right, allowing them to withdraw service after a major accident, causing delays and cancellations.

The Mayor of Nice has announced he will run for a third term in March. Christian Estrosi entered politics almost 40 years ago in 1983 as a municipal councillor for Jacques Médecin and first took the role of Mayor in 2008.

Cannes, Nice and Antibes are among the Top 10 most expensive cities in France to buy property. A new survey by SeLoger shows prices in the cities vary between four and five thousand euro per square metre. Topping the list of provincial cities was Lyon at 5,000 a square metre but nobody can touch Paris at over 10,000.

Former President Nicolas Sarkozy was in Nice today to inaugurate a huge new ‘green lung’ for the city, built on the site of the old Ray football stadium. Two years in the making, the colossal three-hectare green area was unveiled by the former President along with the Mayor of Nice.

BUSINESS

Sterling has dipped today after hints the Bank of England may cut interest rates if upcoming data does not suggest a rebound for the UK economy. Another report today shows UK GDP grew at its weakest annual pace in over seven years during November.

Porsche has revealed 2019 was a record year for global sales with over 280,000 high performance cars delivered to customers last year. The biggest sales increases were in Europe which recorded a 15% growth.

UK airline Flybe are refusing to comment on reports they are close to collapse. Virgin Atlantic and Stobart Group have poured millions into the troubled airline after acquiring it last year. Flybe connect Birmingham, Edinburgh & Manchester with Nice Cote d’Azur airport.

SPORT

Football - Everyone is talking about last night’s dramatic match where AS Monaco got three goals past PSG at their home ground in Paris! It’s the first time in over ten years Paris St-Germain have conceded three home goals in a single league game. All eyes are now on the second leg, where AS Monaco will have the home ground advantage, when the game kicks off at Stade Louis II this Wednesday at 8pm.

In European football, Manchester United and Sporting Lisbon have held face-to-face talks over the transfer of Bruno Fernandes. The Portugal mid-fielder, worth over €70 million, is keen on a move but there has been no agreement between the clubs over a fee.

Formula 1 - Ferrari's Charles Leclerc says he and team-mate Sebastian Vettel will not crash together on track again. Their collision in Brazil at the end of last season was the climax of a series of controversies between the two. The 22-year-old Monegasque was speaking in a magazine interview, saying he and Vettel are very competitive but actually work very well together.

Rugby - Wales and Ospreys back James Hook is to retire at the end of the season. The 34-year-old has played 81 times for Wales and toured with the 2009 British and Irish Lions in South Africa. He says he wants to concentrate on a new career writing children’s books.

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