10 good reasons to invest in France
France alone is a market of over 65 million consumers, making it the 2nd largest in Europe and the world’s sixth largest economy.
The European Union remains the world’s largest economy, with over 500 million consumers.
France has the largest road network in Europe and the 2nd largest high-speed rail network in Europe.
It is the largest recipient of foreign direct investment (FDI) in logistics in Europe and is home to the 2nd busiest European airport (cargo and passengers): Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle
France ranks 6th in the world for hourly labour productivity (€45.6 per hour worked compared with €37.3 in the eurozone).
It has a highly-qualified workforce: in 2013, 44% of 30-34 year olds were higher-education graduates.
Set-up and operating costs are lower in France than in the United States, Germany and Japan. Furthermore, renting office space in the Paris business centre is half the cost of the same space in London’s West End (€875/m²/year as opposed to €1,978/m²/year).
We must stress that creating a company in France costs less than 1% of average per capita income, compared to an average of 9% in the G20 countries.
The world’s largest incubator is in France: the Halle Freyssinet will bring together 1,000 start-ups in Paris in 2016.
Furthermore, research tax credit (CIR) is open to all companies and amounts to about €5 billion in 2015. No less than 20,441 companies received it in 2012.
€47 billion was mobilized for the future investments programme (PIA) and the French Very-High-Speed Broadband Plan.
Euronext Paris is the world’s 7th-largest financial centre, the 3rd largest in Europe for company bonds, 5th in the world for transactions in yuans and 3rd largest in Europe for the management of financial assets.
France is an attractive destination for professionals (Paris is the world’s number one destination for business conferences), students (world’s 3rd most popular destination) and tourists (world’s number one destination).
The Competitiveness and Employment Tax Credit (CICE) and the Responsibility and Solidarity Pact together make up a €40 billion reduction in production costs for companies: this is equivalent to almost 2% of GDP which will support activity and enable 500,000 jobs to be created by 2020.
France is the European leader in terms of e-administration and is fourth in the global ranking based on three criteria: on-line services offered by the government, telecommunications infrastructures and its population’s level of education.
The act on the simplification of running companies, which was passed in December 2014, enabled companies and users to make savings of €3.3 billion in 2013-2014. The single individual social declaration will save companies €1.6 billion in 2015-2016.
France has signed tax conventions with over 120 countries (avoidance of double taxation). It has also provided companies with a single contact for tax matters (Tax4Business) and adapted residence permits (Talents Passport, created in 2015).
A grant and a support mechanism for innovative entrepreneurs were also set up, known as the French Tech ticket. The first foreign entrepreneurs to avail of this will arrive in January 2016.
Please have a look at this very useful summary of the French economy by BNP Paribas (in French), including key figures on population, employment, loans, administration and external accounts, and previsions for 2017 and 2018.
© 2017 FRANCE IRELAND CHAMBER OF COMMERCE