FRANCE: Full name French Republic (“République Française”)

Metropolitan France is located in 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

  • Population: 65,951,611
  • Capital: Paris
  • Size: 643,801 sq km
  • Government type: Republic
  • Official Language: French
  • Ethnic Groups: Celtic and Latin with Teutonic, Slavic, North African, Indochinese, Basque minorities
  • Overseas departments: : black, white, mulatto, East Indian, Chinese, Amerindian
  • Major Religion: Roman Catholic 83%-88%
  • Main exports: machinery and transportation equipment, aircraft, plastics, chemicals, pharmaceutical products, iron and steel, beverages


  • 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.
  • France’s leaders remain committed to a capitalism in which they maintain social equity by means of laws, tax policies, and social spending that reduce income disparity and the impact of free markets on public health and welfare.
  • With at least 79 million foreign tourists per year, France is the most visited country in the world and maintains the third largest income in the world from tourism.
  • GDP per capita: 27658
  • Public Debt: 89.1% of GDP
  • Unemployment rate: 9.8%


Jules Ferry, the French Prime Minister at this time, introduced the compulsory education in France in 1881-1882 with the education act.

Jules Ferry, the French Prime Minister at this time, introduced the compulsory education (from age 3 to 18) in France in 1881-1882 with the education act.

  • In France, the organization and management of education are entrusted to the Ministry of National Education and the Ministry of Higher Education and Research.
  • Important elements of the education system have been:

    –> equality (which means same access for everyone)

    –> coeducation (which means the education of boys and girls together, and

    –> “laicité, (which means the distinction of schools from religion and no costs for schools)

  • French higher education has a plurality of formations whose goals, administrative structures, admission requirements and organization studies are varied.
  • Apart from the state offer, there exist private schools, which are very expensive and which influences the claim of equality the same as the allocation on residence does.
  • The same counts for higher education: There are some very expensive universities and “Grandes écoles” where everybody can’t afford to go

Fun facts:

  •  France has won the most Nobel Prizes for Literature than any other country in the world, and the second most in mathematics.
  •  French film production is second in the world.
  • The ministry of health once tried to promote milk as the national drink of France.