Common questions about France: we answer

Common questions about France: we answer

1/ Is it a burden to create a company in France?

The formalities for setting up businesses have been greatly simplified and the whole procedure can be carried out over the internet. As a ‘one-stop shop’, the CFE deal with all the formalities for creating a new company. They handle all administrative details in one place, including all the documents required to set up, change or close down companies.

Thus, It takes only a few days for a company to be recorded in the Company Register. The cost of administrative formalities is approximately €84, plus the cost of publishing a notice announcing a new company in the legal gazette (approximately €230). Moreover, the IFA can help investors choose an appropriated business structure, depending on their strategy and the degree of independence from the parent company.

2/ Are French workers always on strike?

The truth is that average number of lost working days due to strike actions (excluding public sector, per 1000 inhabitants) is 96, which is less than Germany, Italy or Japan. According to the OECD, France even enjoys the highest productivity among large EU countries. French managers are commonly considered as hard-workers, often dedicating 50 hours per week to their job.

3/ Does France welcome foreign companies?

“France is one of the most open countries to inward investment, […] is the leading recipient in Europe of foreign investment in industry” reports EY’s European attractiveness survey. If you also take into account the 25.000 foreign companies already operating in France, that would show you our willingness to welcome investors.

Moreover, the government, to foster the setting-up of foreign companies in France, has carried out a tailored tax system for expatriates and nonresident companies. For instance, employees transferred within their group, or directly recruited from abroad, and company directors, may claim exemption from income tax on up to 50% of their total income,

4/ How expensive is it to operate in France?

According to a KPMG study, business set-up and operating costs are lower in France than in the US and Germany. The electricity for instance, is among the cheapest in Europe. Regarding average labor costs, they are lower than in the US, Japan, Germany, Italy. In a word, French Cost Index (that includes Labor, Facility, Transport and Utility costs) is comparable to UK, USA, Australia or Germany

5/ London is more business-friendly than Paris: is it true?

As two of the most important economic hubs in the world, Paris and London are top-choice destinations for international investors in Europe. Both cities boast talented workers, productive labor forces and world-class infrastructure. But when key living and business factors are compared overall, Paris offers many advantages over London. For instance, transportation and real-estate are an asset for Paris. Actually, total occupancy costs for city-center offices in London are $2500/m² (Source: Scholfield&Partner), which is almost twice the price of Paris. Public transportation costs are very high in London ($6 for a 10-station ride) and can’t be justified by a higher efficiency. In a word, costs of living in London are among the highest in the world, which might reduce the “business-friendly” perception.

6/ How long will I have to wait to get my Visa?

If you are Singaporean and if your journey is less than 3 months, you don’t need any visa to go to France. If you’re not Singaporean, you will need to go to the French Embassy to schedule an appointment. After this appointment, provided that you had complete documentation ready, your visa will be delivered within 2 days. This will be a Schengen visa, allowing you to move through European Union.

By the way, our consular service commits itself to respond to any e-mail within 24 hours.

Dernière modification : 29/09/2014

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