In the news this week...

Land reclamation, Mecaplast, National Council session, economic agreement with Luxembourg

Land reclamation

The big news story this week was the suspension of the project to reclaim land from the sea. In a press conference on Wednesday morning, the government confirmed that further environmental studies would be made in 2009 to ensure there'd be no negative effects on the marine eco system. In addition, the Minister of State said it made good sense to delay the project in the current economic climate.


More bad news in Monaco's industrial sector as Mecaplast, the plastics manufacturer ends 2008 on a low note. Problems in the global automobile industry have filtered through to the company, which manufactures parts for cars. A suggested cut in hours failed to obtain the 100% vote needed to implement it, and so 18 workers are now facing temporary suspension.

National Council session

The Principality's parliament, the National Council, met on Friday for their public assembly to examine and vote on the preliminary budget for 2009. On the agenda next week will be further discussion about the proposed changes to the law making it easier to set up associations.

Economic agreement with Luxembourg

Monaco's Chamber of Economic Development (CDE) signed a cooperative agreement with the Belgo-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce (BLCC) with the objective of promoting cooperation between enterprises, and economic, commercial and financial institutions. Although the CDE and BLCC have worked together for some time, the agreement makes the relationship formal, similar to the ones already in place with the UK and Qatar.

And finally...

Last Saturday the Christmas lights were turned on in Casino Square in the presence of Dame Shirley Bassey. The central display resembles a huge box of jewelry, and as the switch was flicked, it was brought to life to the strains of one of the Welsh singer's most famous hits. Of course, "Diamonds are Forever".