France is the fifth largest economy in the world. It plays an influential global role as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, NATO, the G-8, the G-20, the European Union and other multilateral organizations.

It is bordering on the channel, Belgium and Germany to the north, the Atlantic to the west, Italia and Switzerland to the east and the Mediterranean Sea and Spain to the south.

The French market benefits from a favourable geographic strategic location which is reinforced by its highly effective rail and motorway network and by having one of the most important harbours in the European Union, Le Havre and the most important of the Mediterranean Sea, Marseille.

The French population in the metropolitan area reached 63,9 million for an unemployment rate of 9.8% at the end of 2013 and a gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in purchasing power parities of €27,850.

The total area of France is 640,427 sq km of land, 549,970 sq km for metropolitan France and is 3,374 sq km of water, 1,530 sq km for metropolitan France.

France is divided into 22 metropolitan regions and 5 overseas regions (French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mayotte, and Reunion) and is subdivided into 96 metropolitan departments and 5 overseas departments (which are the same as the overseas regions).