the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

FACT SHEET: United States-France Economic and Commercial Partnership

France is one of the United States’ largest and most important commercial partners.  The strength of our economic relationship is based on extensive bilateral trade as well as substantial investment in each other’s markets, both of which create high quality, well-paying jobs.   Our dynamic economic partnership also drives cooperation in other cooperative fora such as the G8 and G20.

Jobs and Investment

France is a key source of foreign direct investment (FDI) and jobs in the United States.  The total stock of French FDI in the United States stood at $222 billion at the end of 2012.  France is one of the top five sources of jobs created by FDI in the United States, with U.S. affiliates of French firms employing approximately 525,000 Americans in 2011 at an average wage of nearly $80,000.  At the same time, the United States was the leading job-creating investor in France in 2012, with U.S. FDI stock in France totaling $83 billion.  More than 1,240 affiliates of U.S. firms were present in 2012 in France, supporting an estimated 440,000 jobs. 

Trade

France was the United States’ 8th largest goods trading partner in 2013, with U.S. goods exports to France valued at $32 billion and imports from France totaling $45 billion.  The United States is France’s largest customer for goods outside of the European Union.  Almost 25 percent of bilateral goods trade is in the aerospace sector, evidencing the interconnectedness of the global supply chains of major aircraft manufacturers on both sides of the Atlantic.  France and the United States are also key trading partners in services, with U.S. services exports to France reaching $15.1 billion in the first nine months of 2013 and services imports from France valued at $11.7 billion during the same period.  The United States and France, through its membership in the European Union, are engaged in negotiation of a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP).  The United States seeks to deepen economic ties with Europe through an ambitious and comprehensive agreement.

Launching of Bilateral Economic-Commercial Dialogue

The U.S. Department of Commerce and French Ministry of Economy and Finance have agreed to establish a “U.S.-France Economic-Commercial Dialogue” to enhance bilateral cooperation and to expand trade and investment.  The dialogue aims to facilitate the exchange of information and encourage bilateral discussions to identify ways to boost jobs and growth in both countries and to improve competitiveness through innovation and entrepreneurship.  Potential items for discussion and cooperation include: development and support of small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs); encouragement of direct investment in both directions; strategies to promote advanced manufacturing, innovation, and entrepreneurship; workforce training; promotion of green products and energy technologies; market access issues; and the potential benefits of the T-TIP.  The dialogue will be co-chaired by the Commerce Assistant Secretary for Global Markets and an equivalent level Economy Ministry official.  The two sides aim to hold a first meeting of the dialogue in May or June of 2014.