In 2022, the number of job-creating foreign investment projects recorded reached a record figure of 1,725, amounting to an increase of 7% compared with 2021. These new projects have made it possible to create or maintain 58,810 jobs, a record increase of 31% over the previous year. On average, 33 investment decisions were taken per week in 2022, as France reached its highest level of attractiveness ever.
These projects came from around sixty different countries in 2022. European investors nevertheless remained largely in the majority, responsible for 65% of all projects.
The United States regained first place as an investing country in France this year, with 280 projects (16%) and 17,107 jobs recorded (29%), ahead of Germany, which had 256 projects (15%) and 7,181 jobs (12%). The United Kingdom completed the podium of investor countries in France in terms of projects, with 176 projects recorded and 4,071 jobs.
Decisions on new establishments in France amounted to 50% of projects, reflecting the interest accorded by foreign investors to the business environment and economic prospects of France. Decisions to expand existing sites amounted to 46% of projects, a sign of the renewed confidence of foreign businesses that have already invested in France.
The re-industrialization of France has begun. Manufacturing activities remained in first place, with 26% of investment decisions (457 projects) and 30% of jobs identified (17,487 jobs). Decision-making center activities followed, with 23% of investment projects. Of particular note was the 23% rise in the number of research and development projects (191 projects) compared with 2021 and a 53% increase in jobs created (4,789 jobs). These results show that France, which has many key advantages, is well perceived by foreign investors as a land of innovation.
Foreign investments continued to take root throughout the country. A total of 43% of investment decisions concerned municipalities with fewer than 20,000 inhabitants and amounted to 39% of jobs. An even more striking figure is that manufacturing projects were set up nationwide, with 74% in municipalities with fewer than 20,000 inhabitants, creating 71% of associated jobs. Foreign investors create jobs and value-added throughout France, thereby contributing to the regeneration of France’s regions.
Bruno Le Maire, Minister for the Economy, Finance and Industrial and Digital Sovereignty said: “These excellent figures confirm France’s attractiveness, which has shone through since 2017, thanks to the actions of entrepreneurs and the reforms carried out by the Government to improve economic policy and speed up the setup of businesses in France. Investment programs such as ‘France 2030’, the competitiveness of our tax system, which favors innovation, the quality of our infrastructure and our highly skilled workforce are all valuable assets that have played a part in these decisions to set up new or expand existing infrastructure. I particularly appreciate the consistency of our American, German and British allies and friends in their investment choices, which reflects their confidence in France's capacity for innovation and creation. The green industry bill that I will put forward later this year should entice yet more international investors to open businesses and factories throughout our country.”
“In what has been a turbulent period internationally, France is staying on course. The year 2022 saw France prove that it can attract international investment projects that provide jobs and prosperity for our fellow citizens and our regions. This result was not achieved by accident: it is thanks to the reforms carried out over the past five years to transform, simplify and make our social, fiscal and administrative environment more competitive. The large proportion of expansion projects, half of which relate to industrial investments, reflects this confidence in the long term. Beyond the figures, I am delighted with the renewed appetite for France as shown by all the leaders of the international businesses that I have met,” said Olivier Becht, Minister Delegate reporting to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, with responsibility for Foreign Trade, Economic Attractiveness and French Nationals Abroad.
“Despite the headwinds that France faced in 2022, the country is still proving incredibly attractive, thanks to the work of Business France and Team France Invest. Proof of this is the record level of foreign investment in France. Our country is undergoing a re-industrialization: we are creating factories and jobs across the nation. And we will continue to lead this industrial fight by further improving our competitiveness, by investing in innovation and by focusing on skills and talent. The green industry bill will serve as increased public action in support of French industry,” said Roland Lescure, Minister Delegate reporting to the Minister for the Economy, Finance and Industrial and Digital Sovereignty, with responsibility for Industry.
“This is welcome news regarding France's attractiveness, with manufacturing activities this year once again occupying the top spot in foreign investment decisions. International investment is contributing to France’s re-industrialization efforts. And that is the whole point of the ‘France 2030’ plan: to give our country the means to develop industries and create jobs that will enable us to respond to the major challenges that we face. Foreign investors have fully understood this, with 22% of decisions related to sectors targeted by ‘France 2030’. This is also the result of the hard work of the Business France teams to attract these investment projects under the best conditions,” said Laurent Saint-Martin, CEO of Business France.
“On a global scale, France's attractiveness continues to grow; the 23% increase in the number of international R&D projects in 2022 reflects an innovative and daring country that can anticipate change. With its talent, France has everything it needs to position itself at the forefront of the sectors of the future,” said Pascal Cagni, Chairman of Business France and Ambassador for International Investment.