Immigration to France | The comprehensive Guide
Do you like life in France and living in one of its picturesque suburbs? Or maybe you are interested in fashion and want to immigrate to France to work in one of the famous fashion houses there? How about setting up your own fashion house there in the elegance capital of Paris?
Whatever the reason that may lead you to think of traveling to France, you have come to the right place, because in today’s article you will learn about the steps to immigrate to France in order to work and live, in addition to some facts and advantages of immigration to France, as well as its negatives.
Fast facts about France
- France is the largest country in the European Union, with a population of about 67 million.
- France has a rich cultural heritage and is considered one of the most popular tourist destinations around the world, receiving more than 80 million tourists annually.
- France covers an area of 644,000 square kilometers, and has several regions and territories abroad (Corsica Island, French Guiana, Guadalupe, Martinique, Mayotte, Reunion).
- France stands at the forefront of the developed countries in the world, plays an important role on the world stage and is one of the most powerful countries in Europe alongside Germany.
- The country has a highly diversified economy, with major industries including: services, manufacturing, technology, tourism, pharmaceuticals and communications.
- France is one of the most desirable countries to live in, with a high quality of life and a flexible work culture.
Useful information about France
Currency, religion, language, as well as the most important cities in France… all are useful information that you need to know before deciding to immigrate to this country. Here are some of this information:
- Currency used: the euro.
- Official languages: French. And the local languages are witnessing a noticeable decline day by day.
- Prevalent religions: Catholicism (84%), Islam (9%), Protestantism (2%), Judaism (1%).
- Major cities: Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Lille, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice.
Apply for: Free French Government Scholarship
Pros and cons of immigrating to France
Every country has its pros and cons. There is no utopia without flaws on the planet. So that you can make a sound decision about whether France is the right choice for immigration or not, here is a quick comparison between the pros and cons of taking this step.
Advantages of immigrating to France
- France is famous for its high standard of living. The French take their time to rest, slow down and enjoy the present moment. While some consider this lifestyle to be “slow”, it does not mean that it is inefficient.
- There is a high sense of community in France, and the French never miss an opportunity to meet and get to know each other.
- France has a rich culture, and the arts are valued and respected. Many artists and musicians choose to live in France for this very reason, and museums and art galleries are all over the place.
- The work culture in France is very flexible and comfortable, as taking an annual leave of five weeks is normal and normal!
- Getting around in France is easy, the major cities have an excellent transportation system, and moving between cities is very easy thanks to the rail system. France is also famous for its fast trains.
- The French take food very seriously. Each region of France has its own distinct cuisine, so you will have plenty to explore without forgetting the delicious French cheeses.
- France has a beautiful nature, and you can find different climates and charming views, from sunny beaches to the high Alps.
Disadvantages of immigrating to France
- Individuals with an income of more than 70,000 euros per year are charged very high taxes.
- Fluency in the French language is a prerequisite for living and working in France. Some other dialects of French (such as Quebec French) may help, but they are generally considered to be of lower status than the original French.
- Despite the stability of the French economy, France is experiencing very high competition in the job sector (especially when taking into account the poor economic conditions in neighboring European countries).
- If you’re used to getting things done quickly, you won’t like living in France, where bureaucracy is most powerful.
- Life in Paris is very expensive, so if you do not have enough financial means, you may find that your quality of life has decreased a lot when you immigrate to France.
- You won’t find nightlife in France, as everything closes early. Most small shops close for a few hours in the afternoon each day. On Sunday (the official holiday) almost everything is closed!
Immigration to France for work: visas and job search
So, how can you immigrate to France for work?
Here is the most important information you need to know in this regard:
First: European citizens
Citizens of the European Economic Area (EEA) do not need a work permit, they can simply register with the municipality of the city in which they wish to live.
It should be noted that citizens of Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania cannot move freely to France for work (although they are from EU countries).
Second: Citizens from outside the European Union
For non-EU citizens wishing to work in France, they need a work permit and a residence permit (issued for the same duration of the employment contract).
The work permit is requested by the future employer, who must provide evidence that he has not been able to find a European or French person to fill the position.
The DDTEFP then reviews the application, taking into account the applicant’s qualifications, experience and current employment situation in France.
Once the application is approved by the Directorate, the employer and the immigration authorities are notified, followed by a comprehensive medical examination and obtaining a temporary residence permit (Carte de Séjour Temporaire) or CST for short, in which the type and location of the job is indicated.
The following are the most important types of work permits and residence permits available for immigration to France:
1- APT . Temporary Work Permit
This permit, as the name expresses it, is granted to those who enter French territory temporarily for work and whose payroll will remain non-French.
2- Residence permit for skills and talents
It is a temporary residence permit of three years (renewable) granted to individuals who prove their ability to make a real and significant contribution to the development of the French economy.
Applicants for this permit must submit an offer or project proposal and ensure that it is completed.
3- Blue Card
It is a card that facilitates the entry of skilled and experienced workers to work in France.
The candidate for this card must hold a job offer for at least one year and a salary of at least €52,752 per year.
4- Work visa during holidays
As with most European Union countries, France participates in the Working Holiday Visa programme, so citizens between the ages of 18 and 35, from the following countries can apply to work in France for one year under this programme:
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- South Korea
Note: Some nationalities such as: Canada, New Zealand, Taiwan, Uruguay and others can work in France for 90 days without the need for a work permit.
French permanent residence and citizenship
You can apply for permanent residence in France, after living in France for five continuous years and possessing a current residence permit for no reason. Note that residence permits for specific reasons include:
- Attending training courses.
- cultural exchanges.
- seasonal jobs.
- Orientation Years.
As for obtaining French citizenship, it is possible to apply for it after living for a period of no less than five continuous years in France (or one of its territories abroad).
In the case of being married to a French partner, it is possible to apply for citizenship after 4 years of marriage, and to live in France together for at least one year.
How about investing or starting your own business in France?
When starting a business in France, it is advisable to retain the services of professional advisors as well as related institutions including commercial accountants, lawyers, Chamber of Commerce, APCE Startup Agency and others.
As we have already explained, France is notorious for its complicated bureaucratic procedures, which means that you need patience and patience when starting to set up your business. But things may be easier after the establishment of the Center de formalités des Entreprises, which has collected all the administrative procedures and guidelines that you need to know before starting your own business in France.
The perfect way to start your own business in France is by obtaining a Skills and Talents Residence Permit.
The investment application is submitted to different parties based on the value of the capital:
- For investors with foreign capital (who wish to establish a business, or buy an existing French company or part of it): must apply to the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
- For investments over 1.5 million euros: an application must be made to the French Treasury Department.
- For investments over 15 million euros: you must apply to Banque de France.
Try to establish your business outside of Paris, as you will need much higher capital if you decide to start your investment there, not only in terms of renting office space, but also in terms of attracting skills and hiring staff.
There are other French cities, such as Nantes, Grenoble, and Sophia-Antipolis, that are a distinctive magnet for entrepreneurs.
So, has France joined the list of countries you might want to immigrate to and live in? Or do you aspire to migrate to another place?
Share the answer with us through the comments, or read our other articles on immigration to various other countries around the world.
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