The French finance ministry has said the assets of the the French arm of the Russian state broadcaster were frozen in compliance with the most recent EU sanctions, and not on Paris's initiative, while the Kremlin has promised retaliation for the move.
British retail chain Marks & Spencer has announced it is to close within months all 11 of its stores on French high streets, while sparing those in railway stations and airports, citing 'supply chain complexities in place following the UK's exit from the European Union'.
The nuclear power plant at Fessenheim in north-east France, close to the border with Germany, which entered service almost 40 years ago and which environmental campaigners claim is dangerous, will close by 2020 when an EPR reactor being built in Flamanville is expected to come online.
Utility giant EDF has agreed a compensation deal for the closure, now planned for 2018, of the almost 40-year-old power station at Fessenheim, close to the border with Germany in eastern France and built in an area vulnerable to earthquakes and above one of Europe's biggest underground water reservoirs.
The British clothes and food retailer announced it is to close seven of its stores in and around Paris which employ about 500 people, just five years after returning to France where it had already closed down its entire retail network in 2001.
Alstom CEO said the company will go ahead with closure of manufacturing at its historic train-building plant, affecting 400 staff, despite President Hollande's pledge to do 'everything' to halt the plan.
When French carmaking giant PSA Peugeot-Citroën announced on July 12th it was to close its major assembly plant in Aulnay-sous-Bois, a deprived suburban town just north of Paris, a ripple of fear ran through the nearby sprawling housing estates. Several, like the infamous ‘Cité des 3000’, were originally built as of 1969 to house the plant’s workers and managers and their families. But they soon became ghettos where immigrants were dumped and unemployment and poverty were rife. While recent renovation helped roll back crime, youth unemployment currently runs at around 40%, and locals are now fearful of the future once more. Rachida El Azzouzi travelled to the Cité des 3000 where many inhabitants regarded PSA's now doomed plant as their last lifeline.
by Rachida El Azzouzi
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