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France vs. Germany

Introduction

FranceGermany
Background

France today is one of the most modern countries in the world and is a leader among European nations. It plays an influential global role as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, NATO, the G-7, the G-20, the EU, and other multilateral organizations. France rejoined NATO's integrated military command structure in 2009, reversing DE GAULLE's 1966 decision to withdraw French forces from NATO. Since 1958, it has constructed a hybrid presidential-parliamentary governing system resistant to the instabilities experienced in earlier, more purely parliamentary administrations. In recent decades, its reconciliation and cooperation with Germany have proved central to the economic integration of Europe, including the introduction of a common currency, the euro, in January 1999. In the early 21st century, five French overseas entities - French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mayotte, and Reunion - became French regions and were made part of France proper.

As Europe's largest economy and second most populous nation (after Russia), Germany is a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed Germany in two devastating world wars in the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key western economic and security organizations, the EC (now the EU) and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German reunification in 1990. Since then, Germany has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries introduced a common European exchange currency, the euro.

Geography

FranceGermany
Location

metropolitan France: Western Europe, bordering the Bay of Biscay and English Channel, between Belgium and Spain, southeast of the UK; bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Italy and Spain;

French Guiana: Northern South America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, between Brazil and Suriname;

Guadeloupe: Caribbean, islands between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, southeast of Puerto Rico;

Martinique: Caribbean, island between the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean, north of Trinidad and Tobago;

Mayotte: Southern Indian Ocean, island in the Mozambique Channel, about halfway between northern Madagascar and northern Mozambique;

Reunion: Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar

Central Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of Denmark
Geographic coordinates

metropolitan France: 46 00 N, 2 00 E;

French Guiana: 4 00 N, 53 00 W;

Guadeloupe: 16 15 N, 61 35 W;

Martinique: 14 40 N, 61 00 W;

Mayotte: 12 50 S, 45 10 E;

Reunion: 21 06 S, 55 36 E

51 00 N, 9 00 E
Map references

metropolitan France: Europe;

French Guiana: South America;

Guadeloupe: Central America and the Caribbean;

Martinique: Central America and the Caribbean;

Mayotte: Africa;

Reunion: World

Europe
Area
total: 643,801 sq km ; 551,500 sq km (metropolitan France)
land: 640,427 sq km ; 549,970 sq km (metropolitan France)
water: 3,374 sq km ; 1,530 sq km (metropolitan France)
note: the first numbers include the overseas regions of French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mayotte, and Reunion
total: 357,022 sq km
land: 348,672 sq km
water: 8,350 sq km
Area - comparative
slightly more than four times the size of Georgia; slightly less than the size of Texas
three times the size of Pennsylvania; slightly smaller than Montana
Land boundaries
border countries (8): Andorra 55 km, Belgium 556 km, Germany 418 km, Italy 476 km, Luxembourg 69 km, Monaco 6 km, Spain 646 km, Switzerland 525 km
metropolitan France - total: 2751
French Guiana - total: 1205
total: 3,714 km
border countries (9): Austria 801 km, Belgium 133 km, Czech Republic 704 km, Denmark 140 km, France 418 km, Luxembourg 128 km, Netherlands 575 km, Poland 467 km, Switzerland 348 km
Coastline
4,853 km
metropolitan France: 3,427 km
2,389 km
Maritime claims
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm (does not apply to the Mediterranean Sea)
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
territorial sea: 12 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
Climate

metropolitan France: generally cool winters and mild summers, but mild winters and hot summers along the Mediterranean; occasional strong, cold, dry, north-to-northwesterly wind known as the mistral;

French Guiana: tropical; hot, humid; little seasonal temperature variation;

Guadeloupe and Martinique: subtropical tempered by trade winds; moderately high humidity; rainy season (June to October); vulnerable to devastating cyclones (hurricanes) every eight years on average;

Mayotte: tropical; marine; hot, humid, rainy season during northeastern monsoon (November to May); dry season is cooler (May to November);

Reunion: tropical, but temperature moderates with elevation; cool and dry (May to November), hot and rainy (November to April)

temperate and marine; cool, cloudy, wet winters and summers; occasional warm mountain (foehn) wind
Terrain

metropolitan France: mostly flat plains or gently rolling hills in north and west; remainder is mountainous, especially Pyrenees in south, Alps in east;

French Guiana: low-lying coastal plains rising to hills and small mountains;

Guadeloupe: Basse-Terre is volcanic in origin with interior mountains; Grande-Terre is low limestone formation; most of the seven other islands are volcanic in origin;

Martinique: mountainous with indented coastline; dormant volcano;

Mayotte: generally undulating, with deep ravines and ancient volcanic peaks;

Reunion: mostly rugged and mountainous; fertile lowlands along coast

lowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in south
Elevation extremes
mean elevation: 375 m
lowest point: Rhone River delta -2 m
highest point: Mont Blanc 4,810
note: to assess the possible effects of climate change on the ice and snow cap of Mont Blanc, its surface and peak have been extensively measured in recent years; these new peak measurements have exceeded the traditional height of 4,807 m and have varied between 4,808 m and 4,811 m; the actual rock summit is 4,792 m and is 40 m away from the ice-covered summit
mean elevation: 263 m
lowest point: Neuendorf bei Wilster -3.5 m
highest point: Zugspitze 2,963 m
Natural resources
metropolitan France: coal, iron ore, bauxite, zinc, uranium, antimony, arsenic, potash, feldspar, fluorspar, gypsum, timber, arable land, fish, French Guiana, gold deposits, petroleum, kaolin, niobium, tantalum, clay
coal, lignite, natural gas, iron ore, copper, nickel, uranium, potash, salt, construction materials, timber, arable land
Land use
agricultural land: 52.7% (2011 est.)
arable land: 33.4% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 1.8% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 17.5% (2011 est.)
forest: 29.2% (2011 est.)
other: 18.1% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 48% (2011 est.)
arable land: 34.1% (2011 est.) / permanent crops: 0.6% (2011 est.) / permanent pasture: 13.3% (2011 est.)
forest: 31.8% (2011 est.)
other: 20.2% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land
26,420 sq km 26,950 sq km (2012)
metropolitan France: 26,000 sq km (2012)
6,500 sq km (2012)
Natural hazards

metropolitan France: flooding; avalanches; midwinter windstorms; drought; forest fires in south near the Mediterranean;

overseas departments: hurricanes (cyclones); flooding;

volcanism: Montagne Pelee (1,394 m) on the island of Martinique in the Caribbean is the most active volcano of the Lesser Antilles arc, it last erupted in 1932; a catastrophic eruption in May 1902 destroyed the city of St. Pierre, killing an estimated 30,000 people;; La Soufriere (1,467 m) on the island of Guadeloupe in the Caribbean last erupted from July 1976 to March 1977;; these volcanoes are part of the volcanic island arc of the Lesser Antilles that extends from Saba in the north to Grenada in the south

flooding
Environment - current issues
some forest damage from acid rain; air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; water pollution from urban wastes, agricultural runoff
emissions from coal-burning utilities and industries contribute to air pollution; acid rain, resulting from sulfur dioxide emissions, is damaging forests; pollution in the Baltic Sea from raw sewage and industrial effluents from rivers in eastern Germany; hazardous waste disposal; government established a mechanism for ending the use of nuclear power by 2022; government working to meet EU commitment to identify nature preservation areas in line with the EU's Flora, Fauna, and Habitat directive
Environment - international agreements
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
largest West European nation; most major French rivers - the Meuse, Seine, Loire, Charente, Dordogne, and Garonne - flow northward or westward into the Atlantic Ocean, only the Rhone flows southward into the Mediterranean Sea
strategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea; most major rivers in Germany - the Rhine, Weser, Oder, Elbe - flow northward; the Danube, which originates in the Black Forest, flows eastward
Population distribution
much of the population is concentrated in the north and southeast; although there are many urban agglomerations throughout the country, Paris is by far the largest city, with Lyon ranked a distant second
most populous country in Europe; a fairly even distribution throughout most of the country, with urban areas attracting larger and denser populations, particularly in the far western part of the industrial state of North Rhine-Westphalia

Demographics

FranceGermany
Population
67,848,156 (July 2020 est.)

note: the above figure is for metropolitan France and five overseas regions; the metropolitan France population is 62,814,233

80,159,662 (July 2020 est.)
Age structure
0-14 years: 18.36% (male 6,368,767/female 6,085,318)
15-24 years: 11.88% (male 4,122,981/female 3,938,938)
25-54 years: 36.83% (male 12,619,649/female 12,366,120)
55-64 years: 12.47% (male 4,085,564/female 4,376,272)
65 years and over: 20.46% (male 6,029,303/female 7,855,244) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 12.89% (male 5,302,850/female 5,025,863)
15-24 years: 9.81% (male 4,012,412/female 3,854,471)
25-54 years: 38.58% (male 15,553,328/female 15,370,417)
55-64 years: 15.74% (male 6,297,886/female 6,316,024)
65 years and over: 22.99% (male 8,148,873/female 10,277,538) (2020 est.)
Median age
total: 41.7 years
male: 40 years
female: 43.4 years (2020 est.)
total: 47.8 years
male: 46.5 years
female: 49.1 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate
0.35% (2020 est.)
-0.19% (2020 est.)
Birth rate
11.9 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
8.6 births/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Death rate
9.6 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
12.1 deaths/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Net migration rate
1.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
1.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2020 est.)
Sex ratio
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.93 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.77 male(s)/female
total population: 96 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female
total population: 96.3 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality rate
total: 3.2 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 3.5 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 2.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
total: 3.3 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 3.6 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 3 deaths/1,000 live births (2020 est.)
Life expectancy at birth
total population: 82.2 years
male: 79.1 years
female: 85.4 years (2020 est.)
total population: 81.1 years
male: 78.7 years
female: 83.6 years (2020 est.)
Total fertility rate
2.06 children born/woman (2020 est.)
1.47 children born/woman (2020 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate
0.3% (2019 est.)
0.1% (2018 est.)
Nationality
noun: Frenchman(men), Frenchwoman(women)
adjective: French
noun: German(s)
adjective: German
Ethnic groups
Celtic and Latin with Teutonic, Slavic, North African, Indochinese, Basque minorities

note: overseas departments: black, white, mulatto, East Indian, Chinese, Amerindian

German 87.2%, Turkish 1.8%, Polish 1%, Syrian 1%, other 9% (2017 est.)

note:  data represent population by nationality
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS
190,000 (2019 est.)
87,000 (2018 est.)
Religions
Christian (overwhelmingly Roman Catholic) 63-66%, Muslim 7-9%, Buddhist 0.5-0.75%, Jewish 0.5-0.75%, other 0.5-1.0%, none 23-28% (2015 est.)

note: France maintains a tradition of secularism and has not officially collected data on religious affiliation since the 1872 national census, which complicates assessments of France's religious composition; an 1872 law prohibiting state authorities from collecting data on individuals' ethnicity or religious beliefs was reaffirmed by a 1978 law emphasizing the prohibition of the collection or exploitation of personal data revealing an individual's race, ethnicity, or political, philosophical, or religious opinions; a 1905 law codified France's separation of church and state

Roman Catholic 27.7%, Protestant 25.5%, Muslim 5.1%, Orthodox 1.9%, other Christian 1.1%, other .9%, none 37.8% (2018 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths
<500 (2019 est.)
<500 (2018 est.)
Languages
French (official) 100%, declining regional dialects and languages (Provencal, Breton, Alsatian, Corsican, Catalan, Basque, Flemish, Occitan, Picard)

note: overseas departments: French, Creole patois, Mahorian (a Swahili dialect)

German (official)

note: Danish, Frisian, Sorbian, and Romani are official minority languages; Low German, Danish, North Frisian, Sater Frisian, Lower Sorbian, Upper Sorbian, and Romani are recognized as regional languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)
total: 16 years
male: 16 years
female: 16 years (2018)
total: 17 years
male: 17 years
female: 17 years (2018)
Education expenditures
5.4% of GDP (2016)
4.8% of GDP (2016)
Urbanization
urban population: 81% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 0.72% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 77.5% of total population (2020)
rate of urbanization: 0.27% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water source
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility access
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 100% of population
rural: 100% of population
total: 100% of population
unimproved: urban: 0% of population
rural: 0% of population
total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population
11.017 million PARIS (capital), 1.719 million Lyon, 1.608 million Marseille-Aix-en-Provence, 1.063 million Lille, 1.024 million Toulouse, 969,000 Bordeaux (2020)
3.562 million BERLIN (capital), 1.790 million Hamburg, 1.538 million Munich, 1.119 million Cologne (2020)
Maternal mortality rate
8 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
7 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Health expenditures
11.3% (2017)
11.2% (2017)
Physicians density
3.26 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
4.25 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
Hospital bed density
6 beds/1,000 population (2017)
8 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate
21.6% (2016)
22.3% (2016)
Mother's mean age at first birth
28.7 years (2018 est.)
29.6 years (2017 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate
78.4% (2010/11)
80.3% (2011)

note: percent of women aged 18-49

Dependency ratios
total dependency ratio: 62.4
youth dependency ratio: 28.7
elderly dependency ratio: 33.7
potential support ratio: 3 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 55.4
youth dependency ratio: 21.7
elderly dependency ratio: 33.7
potential support ratio: 3 (2020 est.)

Government

FranceGermany
Country name
conventional long form: French Republic
conventional short form: France
local long form: Republique francaise
local short form: France
etymology: name derives from the Latin "Francia" meaning "Land of the Franks"; the Franks were a group of Germanic tribes located along the middle and lower Rhine River in the 3rd century A.D. who merged with Gallic-Roman populations in succeeding centuries and to whom they passed on their name
conventional long form: Federal Republic of Germany
conventional short form: Germany
local long form: Bundesrepublik Deutschland
local short form: Deutschland
former: German Reich
etymology: the Gauls (Celts) of Western Europe may have referred to the newly arriving Germanic tribes who settled in neighboring areas east of the Rhine during the first centuries B.C. as "Germani," a term the Romans adopted as "Germania"; the native designation "Deutsch" comes from the Old High German "diutisc" meaning "of the people"
Government type
semi-presidential republic
federal parliamentary republic
Capital
name: Paris
geographic coordinates: 48 52 N, 2 20 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

note: applies to metropolitan France only; for its overseas regions the time difference is UTC-4 for Guadeloupe and Martinique, UTC-3 for French Guiana, UTC+3 for Mayotte, and UTC+4 for Reunion

etymology:
name derives from the Parisii, a Celtic tribe that inhabited the area from the 3rd century B.C., but who were conquered by the Romans in the 1st century B.C.; the Celtic settlement became the Roman town of Lutetia Parisiorum (Lutetia of the Parisii); over subsequent centuries it became Parisium and then just Paris


name: Berlin
geographic coordinates: 52 31 N, 13 24 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
etymology: the origin of the name is unclear but may be related to the old West Slavic (Polabian) word "berl" or "birl," meaning "swamp"
Administrative divisions
18 regions (regions, singular - region); Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes, Bourgogne-Franche-Comte (Burgundy-Free County), Bretagne (Brittany), Centre-Val de Loire (Center-Loire Valley), Corse (Corsica), Grand Est (Grand East), Guadeloupe, Guyane (French Guiana), Hauts-de-France (Upper France), Ile-de-France, Martinique, Mayotte, Normandie (Normandy), Nouvelle-Aquitaine (New Aquitaine), Occitanie (Occitania), Pays de la Loire (Lands of the Loire), Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur, Reunion

note: France is divided into 13 metropolitan regions (including the "collectivity" of Corse or Corsica) 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)

16 states (Laender, singular - Land); Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bayern (Bavaria), Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hessen (Hesse), Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania), Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), Nordrhein-Westfalen (North Rhine-Westphalia), Rheinland-Pfalz (Rhineland-Palatinate), Saarland, Sachsen (Saxony), Sachsen-Anhalt (Saxony-Anhalt), Schleswig-Holstein, Thueringen (Thuringia); note - Bayern, Sachsen, and Thueringen refer to themselves as free states (Freistaaten, singular - Freistaat), while Bremen calls itself a Free Hanseatic City (Freie Hansestadt) and Hamburg considers itself a Free and Hanseatic City (Freie und Hansestadt)
Independence
no official date of independence: 486 (Frankish tribes unified under Merovingian kingship); 10 August 843 (Western Francia established from the division of the Carolingian Empire); 14 July 1789 (French monarchy overthrown); 22 September 1792 (First French Republic founded); 4 October 1958 (Fifth French Republic established)
18 January 1871 (establishment of the German Empire); divided into four zones of occupation (UK, US, USSR, and France) in 1945 following World War II; Federal Republic of Germany (FRG or West Germany) proclaimed on 23 May 1949 and included the former UK, US, and French zones; German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany) proclaimed on 7 October 1949 and included the former USSR zone; West Germany and East Germany unified on 3 October 1990; all four powers formally relinquished rights on 15 March 1991; notable earlier dates: 10 August 843 (Eastern Francia established from the division of the Carolingian Empire); 2 February 962 (crowning of OTTO I, recognized as the first Holy Roman Emperor)
National holiday
Fete de la Federation, 14 July (1790); note - although often incorrectly referred to as Bastille Day, the celebration actually commemorates the holiday held on the first anniversary of the storming of the Bastille (on 14 July 1789) and the establishment of a constitutional monarchy; other names for the holiday are Fete Nationale (National Holiday) and quatorze juillet (14th of July)
German Unity Day, 3 October (1990)
Constitution
history: many previous; latest effective 4 October 1958
amendments: proposed by the president of the republic (upon recommendation of the prime minister and Parliament) or by Parliament; proposals submitted by Parliament members require passage by both houses followed by approval in a referendum; passage of proposals submitted by the government can bypass a referendum if submitted by the president to Parliament and passed by at least three-fifths majority vote by Parliament’s National Assembly; amended many times, last in 2008; note - in May 2018, the prime minister submitted a bill to the National Assembly to amend several provisions of the constitution
history: previous 1919 (Weimar Constitution); latest drafted 10-23 August 1948, approved 12 May 1949, promulgated 23 May 1949, entered into force 24 May 1949
amendments: proposed by Parliament; passage and enactment into law require two-thirds majority vote by both the Bundesrat (upper house) and the Bundestag (lower house) of Parliament; articles including those on basic human rights and freedoms cannot be amended; amended many times, last in 2017
Legal system
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal
18 years of age; universal; age 16 for some state and municipal elections
Executive branch
chief of state: President Emmanuel MACRON (since 14 May 2017)
head of government: Prime Minister Jean CASTEX (since 3 July 2020)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president at the suggestion of the prime minister
elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 23 April with a runoff on 7 May 2017 (next to be held in April 2022); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Emmanuel MACRON elected president in second round; percent of vote in first round - Emmanuel MACRON (EM) 24.%, Marine LE PEN (FN) 21.3%, Francois FILLON (LR) 20.%, Jean-Luc MELENCHON (FI) 19.6%, Benoit HAMON (PS) 6.4%, other 8.7%; percent of vote in second round - MACRON 66.1%, LE PEN 33.9%
chief of state: President Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (since 19 March 2017)
head of government: Chancellor Angela MERKEL (since 22 November 2005)
cabinet: Cabinet or Bundesminister (Federal Ministers) recommended by the chancellor, appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by a Federal Convention consisting of all members of the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) and an equivalent number of delegates indirectly elected by the state parliaments; president serves a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 12 February 2017 (next to be held in February 2022); following the most recent Federal Parliament election, the party or coalition with the most representatives usually elects the chancellor (Angela Merkel since 2005) and appointed by the president to serve a renewable 4-year term; Federal Parliament vote for chancellor last held on 14 March 2018 (next to be held after the Bundestag elections in 2021)
election results: Frank-Walter STEINMEIER elected president; Federal Convention vote count - Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (SPD) 931, Christopher BUTTERWEGGE (The Left) 128, Albrecht GLASER (Alternative for Germany AfD) 42, Alexander HOLD (BVB/FW) 25, Engelbert SONNEBORN (Pirates) 10; Angela MERKEL (CDU) reelected chancellor; Federal Parliament vote - 364 to 315
Legislative branch
description: bicameral Parliament or Parlement consists of:
Senate or Senat (348 seats - 328 for metropolitan France and overseas departments and regions of Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, Reunion, and Mayotte, 2 for New Caledonia, 2 for French Polynesia, 1 for Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, 1 for Saint-Barthelemy, 1 for Saint-Martin, 1 for Wallis and Futuna, and 12 for French nationals abroad; members indirectly elected by departmental electoral colleges using absolute majority vote in 2 rounds if needed for departments with 1-3 members and proportional representation vote in departments with 4 or more members; members serve 6-year terms with one-half of the membership renewed every 3 years)
National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (577 seats - 556 for metropolitan France, 10 for overseas departments, and 11 for citizens abroad; members directly elected by absolute majority vote in 2 rounds if needed to serve 5-year terms)
elections:
Senate - last held on 24 September 2017 (next to be held on 24 September 2020)
National Assembly - last held on 11 and 18 June 2017 (next to be held in June 2022)
election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by political caucus (party or group of parties)  - LR 144, PS 73, UC 51. LREM 23, RDSE 22, CRCE 16, RTLI 13, other 6; composition - men 246, women 102, percent of women 29.3%
National Assembly - percent of vote by party first round - LREM 28.2%, LR 15.8%. FN 13.2%, FI 11%, PS 7.4%, other 24.4%; percent of vote by party second round - LREM 43.1%, LR 22.2%, FN 8.8%, MoDEM 6.1%, PS 5.7%. FI 4.9%, other 9.2%; seats by political caucus (party or group of parties) - LREM 306, LR 104, MoDEM 46, UDI/Agir 29, PS 29, UDI 18, FI 17, Liberties and Territories 16, PCF 16, other 14; composition - men 349, women 228, percent of women 39.5%; note - total Parliament percent of women 35.7%
description: bicameral Parliament or Parlament consists of:
Federal Council or Bundesrat (69 seats; members appointed by each of the 16 state governments)
Federal Diet or Bundestag (709 seats - total seats can vary each electoral term; approximately one-half of members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote and approximately one-half directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote; members serve 4-year terms)
elections:
Bundesrat - none; composition is determined by the composition of the state-level governments; the composition of the Bundesrat has the potential to change any time one of the 16 states holds an election
Bundestag - last held on 24 September 2017 (next to be held in 2021 at the latest); most postwar German governments have been coalitions
election results:
Bundesrat - composition - men 50, women 19, percent of women 27.5%
Bundestag - percent of vote by party - CDU/CSU 33%, SPD 20.5%, AfD 12.6%, FDP 10.7%, The Left 9.2%, Alliance '90/Greens 8.9%, other 5%; seats by party - CDU/CSU 246, SPD 152, AfD 91, FDP 80, The Left 69, Alliance '90/Greens 67; composition - men 490, women 219, percent of women 30.5%; note - total Parliament percent of women 30.5%
Judicial branch
highest courts: Court of Cassation or Cour de Cassation (consists of the court president, 6 divisional presiding judges, 120 trial judges, and 70 deputy judges organized into 6 divisions - 3 civil, 1 commercial, 1 labor, and 1 criminal); Constitutional Council (consists of 9 members)
judge selection and term of office: Court of Cassation judges appointed by the president of the republic from nominations from the High Council of the Judiciary, presided over by the Court of Cassation and 15 appointed members; judges appointed for life; Constitutional Council members - 3 appointed by the president of the republic and 3 each by the National Assembly and Senate presidents; members serve 9-year, non-renewable terms with one-third of the membership renewed every 3 years
subordinate courts: appellate courts or Cour d'Appel; regional courts or Tribunal de Grande Instance; first instance courts or Tribunal d'instance; administrative courts

note: in April 2018, the French Government announced its intention to reform the country's judicial system

highest courts: Federal Court of Justice (court consists of 127 judges, including the court president, vice presidents, presiding judges, other judges and organized into 25 Senates subdivided into 12 civil panels, 5 criminal panels, and 8 special panels); Federal Constitutional Court or Bundesverfassungsgericht (consists of 2 Senates each subdivided into 3 chambers, each with a chairman and 8 members)
judge selection and term of office: Federal Court of Justice judges selected by the Judges Election Committee, which consists of the Secretaries of Justice from each of the 16 federated states and 16 members appointed by the Federal Parliament; judges appointed by the president; judges serve until mandatory retirement at age 65; Federal Constitutional Court judges - one-half elected by the House of Representatives and one-half by the Senate; judges appointed for 12-year terms with mandatory retirement at age 68
subordinate courts: Federal Administrative Court; Federal Finance Court; Federal Labor Court; Federal Social Court; each of the 16 federated states or Land has its own constitutional court and a hierarchy of ordinary (civil, criminal, family) and specialized (administrative, finance, labor, social) courts
Political parties and leaders
Presidential majority Parties [Edouard PHILIPPE]
     Democratic Movement or MoDem [Francois BAYROU]
     La Republique en Marche! or LREM [Richard FERRAND]
     Movement of Progressives or MDP  Robert HUE]
Parliamentary right Parties [Francois BAROIN]
     Hunting, Fishing, Nature and Tradition or CPNT [Eddie PUYJAION]
     The Republicans or LR [Annie GENEVARD]
     Union of Democrats and Independents or UDI [Jean-Christophe    CAMBADELIS]
     
Parliamentary left Parties [Bernard CAZENEUVE]
     Sociatlist Party or PS [Jean-Christophe CAMBADEMAND]
     Radical Party of the Left or PRG [Sylvia PINEL]
     Citizen and Republican Movement or MRC [Jean-Luc LAURENT]
     Martinican Progressive Party or PPM [Aiem CESAIRE]
Debout la France or DLF [Nicolas DUPONT-AIGNAN]
Ecology Democracy Solidarity or EDS [Paula FORTEZA, Matthieu ORPHELIN
(splinter party formed in May 2020 by defectors of LREM)
Europe Ecologists - the Greens or EELV [David CORMAND]
French Communist Party or PCF [Pierre LAURENT]
La France Insoumise or FI [Jean-Luc MELENCHONLIS]
National Front or FN [Marine LE PEN]

Alliance '90/Greens [Annalena BAERBOCK and Robert HABECK]
Alternative for Germany or AfD [Alexander GAULAND and Joerg MEUTHEN]
Christian Democratic Union or CDU [Annegret KRAMP-KARRENBAUER]
Christian Social Union or CSU [Markus SOEDER]
Free Democratic Party or FDP [Christian LINDNER]
The Left or Die Linke [Katja KIPPING and Bernd RIEXINGER]
Social Democratic Party or SPD [Andrea NAHLES]
International organization participation
ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BDEAC, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS (observer), CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, FZ, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, InOC, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, MINUSTAH, MONUSCO, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SPC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, Union Latina, UNMIL, UNOCI, UNRWA, UN Security Council (permanent), UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS, CD, CDB, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SICA (observer), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMISS, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US
Ambassador Philippe ETIENNE (since 8 July 2019)
chancery: 4101 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 944-6000
FAX: [1] (202) 944-6166
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, Washington, DC
Ambassador Emily Margarethe HABER (since 22 June 2018)
chancery: 4645 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 298-4000
FAX: [1] (202) 298-4249
consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Jamie D. McCOURT (since 18 December 2017); note - also accredited to Monaco
telephone: [33] (1) 43-12-22-22
embassy: 2 Avenue Gabriel, 75008 Paris
mailing address: PSC 116, APO AE 09777
FAX: [33] (1) 42 66 97 83
consulate(s) general: Marseille, Strasbourg
consulate(s): Bordeaux, Lyon, Rennes
chief of mission: Ambassador Richard GRENELL (since 8 May 2018)
telephone: [49] (30) 8305-0
embassy: Clayallee 170, 14191 Berlin
mailing address: Clayallee 170, 14191 Berlin
FAX: [49] (30) 8305-1215
consulate(s) general: Dusseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Leipzig, Munich
Flag description
three equal vertical bands of blue (hoist side), white, and red; known as the "Le drapeau tricolore" (French Tricolor), the origin of the flag dates to 1790 and the French Revolution when the "ancient French color" of white was combined with the blue and red colors of the Parisian militia; the official flag for all French dependent areas

note: the design and/or colors are similar to a number of other flags, including those of Belgium, Chad, Cote d'Ivoire, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, and Netherlands

three equal horizontal bands of black (top), red, and gold; these colors have played an important role in German history and can be traced back to the medieval banner of the Holy Roman Emperor - a black eagle with red claws and beak on a gold field
National anthem
name: "La Marseillaise" (The Song of Marseille)
lyrics/music: Claude-Joseph ROUGET de Lisle

note: adopted 1795, restored 1870; originally known as "Chant de Guerre pour l'Armee du Rhin" (War Song for the Army of the Rhine), the National Guard of Marseille made the song famous by singing it while marching into Paris in 1792 during the French Revolutionary Wars

name: "Das Lied der Deutschen" (Song of the Germans)
lyrics/music: August Heinrich HOFFMANN VON FALLERSLEBEN/Franz Joseph HAYDN

note: adopted 1922; the anthem, also known as "Deutschlandlied" (Song of Germany), was originally adopted for its connection to the March 1848 liberal revolution; following appropriation by the Nazis of the first verse, specifically the phrase, "Deutschland, Deutschland ueber alles" (Germany, Germany above all) to promote nationalism, it was banned after 1945; in 1952, its third verse was adopted by West Germany as its national anthem; in 1990, it became the national anthem for the reunited Germany

International law organization participation
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)
Gallic rooster, fleur-de-lis, Marianne (female personification); national colors: blue, white, red
eagle; national colors: black, red, yellow
Citizenship
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of France
dual citizenship recognized: yes
residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a German citizen or a resident alien who has lived in Germany at least 8 years
dual citizenship recognized: yes, but requires prior permission from government
residency requirement for naturalization: 8 years

Economy

FranceGermany
Economy - overview

The French economy is diversified across all sectors. The government has partially or fully privatized many large companies, including Air France, France Telecom, Renault, and Thales. However, the government maintains a strong presence in some sectors, particularly power, public transport, and defense industries. France is the most visited country in the world with 89 million foreign tourists in 2017. France's leaders remain committed to a capitalism in which they maintain social equity by means of laws, tax policies, and social spending that mitigate economic inequality.

France's real GDP grew by 1.9% in 2017, up from 1.2% the year before. The unemployment rate (including overseas territories) increased from 7.8% in 2008 to 10.2% in 2015, before falling to 9.0% in 2017. Youth unemployment in metropolitan France decreased from 24.6% in the fourth quarter of 2014 to 20.6% in the fourth quarter of 2017.

France’s public finances have historically been strained by high spending and low growth. In 2017, the budget deficit improved to 2.7% of GDP, bringing it in compliance with the EU-mandated 3% deficit target. Meanwhile, France's public debt rose from 89.5% of GDP in 2012 to 97% in 2017.

Since entering office in May 2017, President Emmanuel MACRON launched a series of economic reforms to improve competitiveness and boost economic growth. President MACRON campaigned on reforming France’s labor code and in late 2017 implemented a range of reforms to increase flexibility in the labor market by making it easier for firms to hire and fire and simplifying negotiations between employers and employees. In addition to labor reforms, President MACRON’s 2018 budget cuts public spending, taxes, and social security contributions to spur private investment and increase purchasing power. The government plans to gradually reduce corporate tax rate for businesses from 33.3% to 25% by 2022.

The German economy - the fifth largest economy in the world in PPP terms and Europe's largest - is a leading exporter of machinery, vehicles, chemicals, and household equipment. Germany benefits from a highly skilled labor force, but, like its Western European neighbors, faces significant demographic challenges to sustained long-term growth. Low fertility rates and a large increase in net immigration are increasing pressure on the country's social welfare system and necessitate structural reforms.

Reforms launched by the government of Chancellor Gerhard SCHROEDER (1998-2005), deemed necessary to address chronically high unemployment and low average growth, contributed to strong economic growth and falling unemployment. These advances, as well as a government subsidized, reduced working hour scheme, help explain the relatively modest increase in unemployment during the 2008-09 recession - the deepest since World War II. The German Government introduced a minimum wage in 2015 that increased to $9.79 (8.84 euros) in January 2017.

Stimulus and stabilization efforts initiated in 2008 and 2009 and tax cuts introduced in Chancellor Angela MERKEL's second term increased Germany's total budget deficit - including federal, state, and municipal - to 4.1% in 2010, but slower spending and higher tax revenues reduced the deficit to 0.8% in 2011 and in 2017 Germany reached a budget surplus of 0.7%. A constitutional amendment approved in 2009 limits the federal government to structural deficits of no more than 0.35% of GDP per annum as of 2016, though the target was already reached in 2012.

Following the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, Chancellor Angela MERKEL announced in May 2011 that eight of the country's 17 nuclear reactors would be shut down immediately and the remaining plants would close by 2022. Germany plans to replace nuclear power largely with renewable energy, which accounted for 29.5% of gross electricity consumption in 2016, up from 9% in 2000. Before the shutdown of the eight reactors, Germany relied on nuclear power for 23% of its electricity generating capacity and 46% of its base-load electricity production.

The German economy suffers from low levels of investment, and a government plan to invest 15 billion euros during 2016-18, largely in infrastructure, is intended to spur needed private investment. Domestic consumption, investment, and exports are likely to drive German GDP growth in 2018, and the country’s budget and trade surpluses are likely to remain high.

GDP (purchasing power parity)
$2.856 trillion (2017 est.)
$2.791 trillion (2016 est.)
$2.761 trillion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$4.199 trillion (2017 est.)
$4.099 trillion (2016 est.)
$4.012 trillion (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - real growth rate
1.49% (2019 est.)
1.81% (2018 est.)
2.42% (2017 est.)
0.59% (2019 est.)
1.3% (2018 est.)
2.91% (2017 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)
$44,100 (2017 est.)
$43,200 (2016 est.)
$42,900 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

$50,800 (2017 est.)
$49,800 (2016 est.)
$49,100 (2015 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars

GDP - composition by sector
agriculture: 1.7% (2017 est.)
industry: 19.5% (2017 est.)
services: 78.8% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 0.7% (2017 est.)
industry: 30.7% (2017 est.)
services: 68.6% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line
14.2% (2015 est.)
16.7% (2015 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 25.4% (2013)
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 24% (2000)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)
1.2% (2017 est.)
0.3% (2016 est.)
1.7% (2017 est.)
0.4% (2016 est.)
Labor force
27.742 million (2020 est.)
44.585 million (2020 est.)
Labor force - by occupation
agriculture: 2.8% (2016 est.)
industry: 20% (2016 est.)
services: 77.2% (2016 est.)
agriculture: 1.4%
industry: 24.2%
services: 74.3% (2016)
Unemployment rate
8.12% (2019 est.)
8.69% (2018 est.)

note: includes overseas territories

4.98% (2019 est.)
5.19% (2018 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index
29.3 (2016)
29.2 (2015)
27 (2006)
30 (1994)
Budget
revenues: 1.392 trillion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 1.459 trillion (2017 est.)
revenues: 1.665 trillion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 1.619 trillion (2017 est.)
Industries
machinery, chemicals, automobiles, metallurgy, aircraft, electronics; textiles, food processing; tourism
among the world's largest and most technologically advanced producers of iron, steel, coal, cement, chemicals, machinery, vehicles, machine tools, electronics, automobiles, food and beverages, shipbuilding, textiles
Industrial production growth rate
2% (2017 est.)
3.3% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - products
wheat, cereals, sugar beets, potatoes, wine grapes; beef, dairy products; fish
potatoes, wheat, barley, sugar beets, fruit, cabbages; milk products; cattle, pigs, poultry
Exports
$549.9 billion (2017 est.)
$507 billion (2016 est.)
$1.434 trillion (2017 est.)
$1.322 trillion (2016 est.)
Exports - commodities
machinery and transportation equipment, aircraft, plastics, chemicals, pharmaceutical products, iron and steel, beverages
motor vehicles, machinery, chemicals, computer and electronic products, electrical equipment, pharmaceuticals, metals, transport equipment, foodstuffs, textiles, rubber and plastic products
Exports - partners
Germany 14.8%, Spain 7.7%, Italy 7.5%, US 7.2%, Belgium 7%, UK 6.7% (2017)
US 8.8%, France 8.2%, China 6.8%, Netherlands 6.7%, UK 6.6%, Italy 5.1%, Austria 4.9%, Poland 4.7%, Switzerland 4.2% (2017)
Imports
$601.7 billion (2017 est.)
$536.7 billion (2016 est.)
$1.135 trillion (2017 est.)
$1.022 trillion (2016 est.)
Imports - commodities
machinery and equipment, vehicles, crude oil, aircraft, plastics, chemicals
machinery, data processing equipment, vehicles, chemicals, oil and gas, metals, electric equipment, pharmaceuticals, foodstuffs, agricultural products
Imports - partners
Germany 18.5%, Belgium 10.2%, Netherlands 8.3%, Italy 7.9%, Spain 7.1%, UK 5.3%, US 5.2%, China 5.1% (2017)
Netherlands 13.8%, China 7%, France 6.6%, Belgium 5.9%, Italy 5.4%, Poland 5.4%, Czechia 4.8%, US 4.5%, Austria 4.3%, Switzerland 4.2% (2017)
Debt - external
$5.36 trillion (31 March 2016 est.)
$5.25 trillion (31 March 2015 est.)
$5.326 trillion (31 March 2016 est.)
$5.21 trillion (31 March 2015 est.)
Exchange rates
euros (EUR) per US dollar -
0.885 (2017 est.)
0.903 (2016 est.)
0.9214 (2015 est.)
0.885 (2014 est.)
0.7634 (2013 est.)
euros (EUR) per US dollar -
0.885 (2017 est.)
0.903 (2016 est.)
0.9214 (2015 est.)
0.885 (2014 est.)
0.7634 (2013 est.)
Fiscal year
calendar year
calendar year
Public debt
96.8% of GDP (2017 est.)
96.6% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: data cover general government debt and include debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intragovernmental debt; intragovernmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions

63.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
67.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: general government gross debt is defined in the Maastricht Treaty as consolidated general government gross debt at nominal value, outstanding at the end of the year in the following categories of government liabilities (as defined in ESA95): currency and deposits (AF.2), securities other than shares excluding financial derivatives (AF.3, excluding AF.34), and loans (AF.4); the general government sector comprises the sub-sectors of central government, state government, local government and social security funds; the series are presented as a percentage of GDP and in millions of euros; GDP used as a denominator is the gross domestic product at current market prices; data expressed in national currency are converted into euro using end-of-year exchange rates provided by the European Central Bank

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold
$156.4 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$138.2 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$200.1 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$173.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance
-$18.102 billion (2019 est.)
-$16.02 billion (2018 est.)
$280.238 billion (2019 est.)
$297.434 billion (2018 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)
$2.588 trillion (2017 est.)
$3.701 trillion (2017 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home
$858.3 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$807.4 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$1.653 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.391 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad
$1.429 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.259 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.298 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.981 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares
$1.591 trillion (31 March 2017 est.)
$2.088 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
$2.086 trillion (31 December 2014 est.)
$1.716 trillion (31 December 2015 est.)
$1.739 trillion (31 December 2014 est.)
$1.936 trillion (31 December 2013 est.)
Central bank discount rate
0% (31 December 2016)
0.05% (31 December 2015)

note: this is the European Central Bank's rate on the marginal lending facility, which offers overnight credit to banks in the euro area

0% (31 December 2017)
0% (31 December 2010)

note: this is the European Central Bank's rate on the marginal lending facility, which offers overnight credit to banks in the euro area

Commercial bank prime lending rate
1.29% (31 December 2017 est.)
1.6% (31 December 2016 est.)
1.67% (31 December 2017 est.)
1.78% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit
$4.334 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.646 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$5.033 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.433 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money
$1.465 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.139 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)

note: see entry for the European Union for money supply for the entire euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 18 members of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of money circulating within their own borders

$2.453 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.016 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)

note: see entry for the European Union for money supply for the entire euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 18 members of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of money circulating within their own borders

Stock of broad money
$1.465 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.139 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
$2.453 trillion (31 December 2017 est.)
$2.016 trillion (31 December 2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues
53.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
45% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)
-2.6% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
1.3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24
total: 20.8%
male: 21.4%
female: 20% (2018 est.)
total: 6.2%
male: 7.1%
female: 5.1% (2018 est.)
GDP - composition, by end use
household consumption: 54.1% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 23.6% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 22.5% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: 0.9% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 30.9% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -32% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 53.1% (2017 est.)
government consumption: 19.5% (2017 est.)
investment in fixed capital: 20.4% (2017 est.)
investment in inventories: -0.5% (2017 est.)
exports of goods and services: 47.3% (2017 est.)
imports of goods and services: -39.7% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving
22.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
21.9% of GDP (2016 est.)
22.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
28% of GDP (2017 est.)
28.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
28.1% of GDP (2015 est.)

Energy

FranceGermany
Electricity - production
529.1 billion kWh (2016 est.)
612.8 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption
450.8 billion kWh (2016 est.)
536.5 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports
61.41 billion kWh (2016 est.)
78.86 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports
19.9 billion kWh (2016 est.)
28.34 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production
16,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)
41,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)
Oil - imports
1.147 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
1.836 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Oil - exports
0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
6,569 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Oil - proved reserves
65.97 million bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
129.6 million bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves
8.41 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
39.5 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - production
16.99 million cu m (2017 est.)
7.9 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption
41.88 billion cu m (2017 est.)
93.36 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports
6.031 billion cu m (2017 est.)
34.61 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports
48.59 billion cu m (2017 est.)
119.5 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity
130.8 million kW (2016 est.)
208.5 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels
17% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
41% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants
15% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
2% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels
50% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
5% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources
19% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
52% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production
1.311 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
2.158 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption
1.705 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
2.46 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports
440,600 bbl/day (2017 est.)
494,000 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports
886,800 bbl/day (2017 est.)
883,800 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy
341.2 million Mt (2017 est.)
847.6 million Mt (2017 est.)
Electricity access
electrification - total population: 100% (2020)
electrification - total population: 100% (2020)

Telecommunications

FranceGermany
Telephones - main lines in use
total subscriptions: 39,234,941
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 58.03 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 38,847,530
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 48.37 (2019 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellular
total subscriptions: 74,791,818
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 110.62 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 103,090,116
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 128.36 (2019 est.)
Internet country code
metropolitan France - .fr; French Guiana - .gf; Guadeloupe - .gp; Martinique - .mq; Mayotte - .yt; Reunion - .re
.de
Internet users
total: 55,265,718
percent of population: 82.04% (July 2018 est.)
total: 72,202,773
percent of population: 89.74% (July 2018 est.)
Telecommunication systems
general assessment: one of the largest mobile phone markets in Europe, worth 13 billion annually; LTE has universal coverage with extensive 5G launching any day, one of the largest broadband subscriber bases in Europe; regional govt. and telecom companies have invested in higher bandwidth w/ fiber infrastructure improvements, an investment more than 20 billion euros (2020)
domestic: 58 per 100 persons for fixed-line and 111 per 100 for mobile-cellular subscriptions (2019)
international: country code - 33; landing points for Circe South, TAT-14, INGRID, FLAG Atlantic-1, Apollo, HUGO, IFC-1, ACE, SeaMeWe-3 & 4, Dunant, Africa-1, AAE-1, Atlas Offshore, Hawk, IMEWE, Med Cable, PEACE Cable, and TE North/TGN-Eurasia/SEACOM/Alexandros/Medex submarine cables providing links throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Africa and US; satellite earth stations - more than 3 (2 Intelsat (with total of 5 antennas - 2 for Indian Ocean and 3 for Atlantic Ocean), NA Eutelsat, 1 Inmarsat - Atlantic Ocean region); HF radiotelephone communications with more than 20 countries (2019)
overseas departments: country codes: French Guiana - 594; landing points for Ella Link, Kanawa, Americas II to South America, Europe, Caribbean and US; Guadeloupe - 590; landing points for GCN, Southern Caribbean Fiber, and ECFS around the Caribbean and US; Martinique - 596; landing points for Americas II, ECFS, and Southern Caribbean Fiber to South America, US and around the Caribbean;  Mayotte - 262; landing points for FLY-LION3 and LION2 to East Africa and East African Islands in Indian Ocean; Reunion - 262; landing points for SAFE, METISS, and LION submarine cables to Asia, South and East Africa, Southeast Asia and nearby Indian Ocean Island countries of Mauritius, and Madagascar (2019)
note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated
general assessment: one of the world's most technologically advanced telecommunications systems; as a result of intensive capital expenditures since reunification, the formerly backward system of the eastern part of the country, dating back to World War II, has been modernized and integrated with that of the western part; universal 3G infrastructure available and LTE networks; mobile market the largest in Europe 107.5 million as of 2019; available reach of 5G services in 5 cities; 98% LTE coverage; penetration in broadband and mobile sectors average for region; Hamburg develops smart city concept (2020)
domestic: extensive system of automatic telephone exchanges connected by modern networks of fiber-optic cable, coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, and a domestic satellite system; cellular telephone service is widely available, expanding rapidly, and includes roaming service to many foreign countries; 48 per 100 for fixed-line and 128 per 100 for mobile-cellular (2019)
international: country code - 49; landing points for SeaMeWe-3, TAT-14, AC-1, CONTACT-3, Fehmarn Balt, C-Lion1, GC1, GlobalConnect-KPN, and Germany-Denmark 2 & 3 - submarine cables to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Southeast Asia and Australia; as well as earth stations in the Inmarsat, Intelsat, Eutelsat, and Intersputnik satellite systems (2019)
note: the COVID-19 outbreak is negatively impacting telecommunications production and supply chains globally; consumer spending on telecom devices and services has also slowed due to the pandemic's effect on economies worldwide; overall progress towards improvements in all facets of the telecom industry - mobile, fixed-line, broadband, submarine cable and satellite - has moderated
Broadband - fixed subscriptions
total: 29.1 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 43 (2018 est.)
total: 34,174,900
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 42 (2018 est.)
Broadcast media
a mix of both publicly operated and privately owned TV stations; state-owned France television stations operate 4 networks, one of which is a network of regional stations, and has part-interest in several thematic cable/satellite channels and international channels; a large number of privately owned regional and local TV stations; multi-channel satellite and cable services provide a large number of channels; public broadcaster Radio France operates 7 national networks, a series of regional networks, and operates services for overseas territories and foreign audiences; Radio France Internationale, under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is a leading international broadcaster; a large number of commercial FM stations, with many of them consolidating into commercial networks
a mixture of publicly operated and privately owned TV and radio stations; 70 national and regional public broadcasters compete with nearly 400 privately owned national and regional TV stations; more than 90% of households have cable or satellite TV; hundreds of radio stations including multiple national radio networks, regional radio networks, and a large number of local radio stations

Transportation

FranceGermany
Railways
total: 29,640 km (2014)
standard gauge: 29,473 km 1.435-m gauge (15,561 km electrified) (2014)
narrow gauge: 167 km 1.000-m gauge (63 km electrified) (2014)
total: 33,590 km (2017)
standard gauge: 33,331 km 1.435-m gauge (19,973 km electrified) (2015)
narrow gauge: 220 km 1.000-m gauge (79 km electrified)
15 km 0.900-m gauge, 24 km 0.750-m gauge (2015)
Roadways
total: 1,053,215 km (2011)
urban: 654,201 km (2011)
non-urban: 399,014 km (2011)
total: 625,000 km (2017)
paved: 625,000 km (includes 12,996 km of expressways) (2017)

note: includes local roads

Waterways
metropolitan France: 8,501 km (1,621 km navigable by craft up to 3,000 metric tons) (2010)
7,467 km (Rhine River carries most goods; Main-Danube Canal links North Sea and Black Sea) (2012)
Pipelines
15322 km gas, 2939 km oil, 5084 km refined products (2013)
37 km condensate, 26985 km gas, 2400 km oil, 4479 km refined products, 8 km water (2013)
Ports and terminals
major seaport(s): Brest, Calais, Dunkerque, Le Havre, Marseille, Nantes,
container port(s) (TEUs): Le Havre (2,870,000) (2017)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Fos Cavaou, Fos Tonkin, Montoir de Bretagne
river port(s): Paris, Rouen (Seine)
cruise/ferry port(s): Calais, Cherbourg, Le Havre
Strasbourg (Rhine) Bordeaux (Garronne)
major seaport(s): Baltic Sea - Rostock
oil terminal(s): Brunsbuttel Canal terminals
container port(s) (TEUs): Bremen/Bremerhaven (5,510,000), Hamburg (8,860,000) (2017)
LNG terminal(s) (import): Hamburg
river port(s): Bremen (Weser)
North Sea - Wilhelmshaven Bremerhaven (Geeste) Duisburg, Karlsruhe, Neuss-Dusseldorf (Rhine) Brunsbuttel, Hamburg (Elbe) Lubeck (Wakenitz)
Merchant marine
total: 552
by type: bulk carrier 25, general cargo 53, oil tanker 29, other 445 (2019)

note: includes Monaco

total: 609
by type: bulk carrier 1, container ship 87, general cargo 83, oil tanker 36, other 402 (2019)
Airports
total: 464 (2013)
total: 539 (2013)
Airports - with paved runways
total: 294 (2017)
over 3,047 m: 14 (2017)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 25 (2017)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 97 (2017)
914 to 1,523 m: 83 (2017)
under 914 m: 75 (2017)
total: 318 (2017)
over 3,047 m: 14 (2017)
2,438 to 3,047 m: 49 (2017)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 60 (2017)
914 to 1,523 m: 70 (2017)
under 914 m: 125 (2017)
Airports - with unpaved runways
total: 170 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 64 (2013)
under 914 m: 105 (2013)
total: 221 (2013)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
914 to 1,523 m: 35 (2013)
under 914 m: 185 (2013)
Heliports
1 (2013)
23 (2013)
National air transport system
number of registered air carriers: 19 (2020)
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 553
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 70,188,028 (2018)
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 4,443,790,000 mt-km (2018)
number of registered air carriers: 20 (2020)
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 1,113
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 109,796,202 (2018)
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 7,969,860,000 mt-km (2018)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefix
F (2016)
D (2016)

Military

FranceGermany
Military branches
Army (Armee de Terre; includes Foreign Legion), Navy (Marine Nationale), Air Force (Armee de l'Air (AdlA); includes Air Defense), National Guard (Reserves), National Gendarmerie (paramilitary police force that is a branch of the Armed Forces but under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior; also has additional duties to the Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Justice) (2019)
Federal Armed Forces (Bundeswehr): Army (Heer), Navy (Deutsche Marine, includes naval air arm), Air Force (Luftwaffe, includes air defense), Joint Support Service (Streitkraeftebasis, SKB), Central Medical Service (Zentraler Sanitaetsdienst, ZSanDstBw), Cyber and Information Space Command (Kommando Cyber- und Informationsraum, Kdo CIR) (2020)
Military service age and obligation
18-25 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; no conscription; 1-year service obligation; women serve in noncombat posts (2013)
17-23 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; conscription ended 1 July 2011; service obligation 8-23 months or 12 years; women have been eligible for voluntary service in all military branches and positions since 2001 (2013)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP
1.84% of GDP (2019 est.)
1.82% of GDP (2018)
1.78% of GDP (2017)
1.79% of GDP (2016)
1.78% of GDP (2015)
1.38% of GDP (2019 est.)
1.24% of GDP (2018)
1.23% of GDP (2017)
1.19% of GDP (2016)
1.18% of GDP (2015)

Transnational Issues

FranceGermany
Disputes - international

Madagascar claims the French territories of Bassas da India, Europa Island, Glorioso Islands, and Juan de Nova Island; Comoros claims Mayotte; Mauritius claims Tromelin Island; territorial dispute between Suriname and the French overseas department of French Guiana; France asserts a territorial claim in Antarctica (Adelie Land); France and Vanuatu claim Matthew and Hunter Islands, east of New Caledonia

none

Illicit drugs

metropolitan France: transshipment point for South American cocaine, Southwest Asian heroin, and European synthetics;

French Guiana: small amount of marijuana grown for local consumption; minor transshipment point to Europe;

Martinique: transshipment point for cocaine and marijuana bound for the US and Europe

source of precursor chemicals for South American cocaine processors; transshipment point for and consumer of Southwest Asian heroin, Latin American cocaine, and European-produced synthetic drugs; major financial center
Refugees and internally displaced persons
refugees (country of origin): 24,293 (Afghanistan), 23,821 (Sri Lanka), 18,473 (Sudan), 18,244 (Syria), 17,512 (Democratic Republic of the Congo), 16,412 (Russia), 14,141 (Serbia and Kosovo), 11,863 (Turkey), 11,038 (Guinea), 11,021 (Cambodia), 8,829 (Iraq), 7,735 (Vietnam), 6,918 (China), 6,464 (Laos), 6,372 (Eritrea), 6,156 (Bangladesh), 5,675 (Mauritania), 5,652 (Cote d'Ivoire), 5,169 (Mali) (2019)
stateless persons: 1,521 (2019)
refugees (country of origin): 572,818 (Syria), 141,650 (Iraq), 140,366 (Afghanistan), 58,569 (Eritrea), 43,244 (Iran), 28,470 (Turkey), 26,015 (Somalia), 8,722 (Russia), 8,639 (Serbia and Kosovo), 8,125 (Pakistan), 7,828 (Nigeria) (2019)
stateless persons: 14,947 (2019)

Source: CIA Factbook