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General facts

Population: 65.7 million

Capital: Paris

Official Language: French

Currency: Euro

Religions: Roman Catholic, Muslim, Protestant

Motto: Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité (Liberty, Equality, Fraternity)

National Anthem: La Marseillaise

Interesting facts

  • France is divided into 22 regions and each of these regions is separated into several departments. There are 96 departments in total.
  • France was originally named Lutetia and then Gaulle before it became France.
  • 20% of the population lives in Paris.
  • One of the most important dates in the French calendar is 14th July, known as Bastille Day.
  • The largest industries in France are wine, cheese and automobiles. The tourism industry is also huge as more than 75 million people visit every year – which is more than any other country.
  • Le Musée du Louvre in Paris has more than eight miles of art galleries and is the most visited art gallery and museum in the world.

Tips for doing business in France

  • Always use a firm handshake each time you meet someone.
  • Learn a bit about French culture and art before your trip, so you can chat about it over your lunch break, which is usually an hour.
  • If you know a bit of French, use Monsieur and Madame when greeting people and then use ‘vous’ rather than ‘tu’ unless told otherwise.

More obscurely, did you know...

  • It is illegal to take a photo of a police officer or police vehicle.
  • France produces over 400 different types of cheese.
  • French toast and French fries do not originate from France.
  • It is legal to marry a deceased person.