Similar to other G7 economies, France’s economy comprises of knowledge intensive services with Banking, Energy, Tourism, Telecommunications, Transport and Health contributing toward almost 80% of GDP. Manufacturing and Agriculture account for the remaining 20% and maintain their balance of payments and trade accounts at a desirable level.
The private sector advocates extensive links with the Government as a support mechanism to assist with adapting to changing circumstances and contingencies. While the financial crisis has had a sustained impact on investment as a result of the high sovereign debt levels around Europe, France’s decision to stimulate the economy through £26bn stimulus package allocated towards infrastructure projects coupled with effective use of automatic stabilisers achieve some success in curbing unemployment rates and drove investment into the economy.
Also, given that France functions as the primary hub for Space Research and Development, a long-term focus has led to a series of emerging sectors. Aeronautics related services particularly, have indicated healthy prospects producing a trade surplus of 20% in 2013 while creating 5000 jobs. Health and Technology is also flourishing with Pharmaceuticals realising a turnover of 50 billion Euros. Increasingly French firms are also allocating funds for research into Biotechnology and Stem Cells. Energy in France is one of the most efficient sectors driven by Nuclear Energy with firms scaling up their operations in the Geothermal, Solar and Wind Energy as well.