Area : 550 000 km²
Population : 65,630,692 million inhabitants (July 2012 est.)
Capital : Paris
Official language : French
Official currency : Euros €
Political system : Republic
Bicaméral parliament : Assemblée nationale et Sénat
President : François HOLLANDE
Prime minister : Jean Marc AYRAULT
More flexible labor market and corporate laws
In recent years, many key factors in the French economy (labor law, tax system, corporate law, innovation and economic immigration) have been subject to major reforms to improve France’s competitiveness and business environment.
These reforms have been accompanied by strong support for an enterprise culture, particularly through the introduction of a simplified legal status for the self-employed. In 2011, 549,805 new businesses were registered in France, including 291,721 under the auto-entrepreneur status.
Labor law has been made more flexible, allowing employees to work longer hours, giving businesses greater freedom to organize employee working hours and ensuring greater democracy in the workplace.
Tax cuts have been introduced both for individuals – and expatriates in particular whose tax position has been further improved – and for companies, whose new investments are now exempt from local business tax. The abolition of this tax on productive investments has applied to new investment flows as well as existing investments as of the beginning of 2010.
Corporate law has been simplified and modified.
Modernization of regulations governing financial asset management are due to bolster the standing of Paris as a financial center and make the French legal environment even more attractive to portfolio managers, investors and savers alike.
More support for innovation
Moves to encourage innovation have been made through a number of new measures, from improving the terms of France's research tax credit and simplifying the patent filing system to extending high-speed broadband internet access.