Bordeaux, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Nice and Toulouse gathered on 18 June to create a circle of influence and collaboration. Known as “Invest in French Metropolises”, the club aims to raise the profile of metropolises as key contributors to the attraction and competitiveness of France at European level.
In spite of a weak international economy, France’s metro areas are turning in strong attractiveness indicators. In 2012, international establishments in France (471) decreased by 13% (-20% for jobs). The attraction of the main French metropolitan areas, however, is rising, with more than 300 new establishments, of which 200 are international.
“Beyond the Paris region, Lyon, Bordeaux, Lille and Toulouse rank well and have shown increased attraction levels for investors, whereas France as a whole is underperforming in this area,” according to Jean-Pierre Letartre, CEO of Ernst & Young in France.
In concrete terms, the aim of the “Invest in French metropolises” club is to strengthen the existing collaboration among these organisations in order to give them more influence on the policies and institutions in charge of strengthening national attractiveness and attracting inward investment. “Though we are sometimes in competition to win certain investment projects,” explains Robert Ghilardi de Benedetti, Director of Bordeaux Invest, “we are also pragmatic and try to avoid competition when one of the metropolises in the running has a clear advantage because of a regional specialisation.”
The club is above all an independent tool for collective promotion, aimed at boosting the influence of French cities at European and global level. “The Bordeaux metro area, France’s 3rd city for the rate of business start-ups, has for several years displayed greater dynamism and attractiveness as shown by the different European and global rankings of cities for investment, work, etc.,” Robert Ghilardi de Benedetti continued, “in 2012, the results concerning inward investment have even shown an increase compared with the results from 2011.”
(Source: Press release 18/06/2013)