As a rule, the French government looks favorably upon foreign investments in France and, in many instances, facilitates such investments by providing various incentives in the form of grants, loans or special tax treatment. However, foreign investors should know that there is a certain degree of governmental intervention in foreign investments in France.
The regulations governing foreign investments made abroad by a resident of France are much less comprehensive than those governing foreign investments made in France by non-residents and essentially relate to reporting requirements. Foreign investors should nonetheless be aware of these regulations in as much as legal entities created in France through direct investments will be deemed residents of France for purposes of exchange control regulations, as will all foreigners working for such entities who acquire resident status.
Foreign investments made abroad or in France by residents and non-residents are governed by specific rules and certain transfers between residents and non-residents are subject to exchange control rules. If the foreign investor wishes to have foreign nationals manage or operate the legal entity established in France as a result of its direct investment, such individuals must obtain both a work permit and a residence permit before assuming their functions. However not all business activities can be carried out in France.
In order to encourage foreign investment in France, various forms of investment incentives have been made available to foreign individuals and legal entities seeking to establish a business in France.