7 Reasons Why France Is Not A Poor Country

France is one of the best known and most visited countries in the world. It is renowned for its culture, food, beauty and romance. With a population of over 67 million, France is the fourth most populous country in Europe. It is also the third largest on the continent. Over 200 million people vacation to France each year. However, many are surprised. Often France does not appear as well-off as people expect it to be. Why is this? Could it be that France is actually a poor country? … in fact, definitely not, and let us explain why…

1. France Is The Sixth Richest Country In The World

A first reason why France is not a poor nation is because it is in fact one of the wealthiest countries in the world.

The GDP of France is 2.95 trillion dollars. This makes it the sixth richest country in the world. France is also the third richest country in Europe – one of the most prosperous regions globally. This is a clear indication that France is not a poor country.

A country’s GDP is a clear indication of its wealth. Essentially, national GDP is calculated by adding together the total value of all the goods and services a country produces. France has one of the highest GDPs in the world. This shows the country produces a wide range of valuable goods and services, and as a result generates a significant amount of wealth.

The large economy of France is not only a factor in making the country rich, but it also ensures the nation is able to function well. The wealth generated in France means the government is able to collect significant sums in revenue through taxation. This they can spend on public services and infrastructure, further improving the quality of life for French people. This is another reason why France is not poor.

2. French People Are Wealthy By Global Standards

A second reason why France is not a poor country is because French people are rich compared to many people around the world.

France has a GDP per capita of 43,000 USD. This means the average French persons earns significantly more than the global average. The average GDP per capita globally is 12,000 USD. This is a clear indication that France is not a poor country.

The GDP per capita of France is the 24th highest in the world. It is also the 15th highest in Europe – again one of the richest regions globally. These facts clearly show that France is a wealthy nation.

Generally, people in France have a high standard of living. French people have good jobs and, on average, earn good salaries. This means they have the money they need to meet their basic needs, and often some left over to spend on things they enjoy.

Although around 10% of people in France do live in poverty, their quality of life is still much higher than those living in destitution in most of the rest of the world. The French state has the wealth needed to provide basic assistance to poorer people, as well as to ensure they can access services such as healthcare and education.

The high GDP per capita, combined with the good quality of living in France, clearly shows it is not a poor country.

3. France Has A Developed Economy

A third reason why France is not a poor nation is because it is a highly developed economy.

A developed economy is one that uses advanced industrial processes and technology in order generate significant wealth for a country’s citizens. A nation needs an advanced economy for it to become prosperous. Development is vital for businesses to succeed and for governments to run good quality public services. It also prevents much of a country’s population falling into poverty.

France industrialized throughout the 19th Century. It’s economy further expanded in the 20th century and into the 21st. For nearly two centuries France has continued on its path towards development. The French economy has long adopted advanced manufacturing techniques and utilized mechanization. French companies are able to provide highly refined and technological advanced goods for the global market. This shows France is not a poor country.

Out of 195 nations in the world, only around 80 are classed as highly advanced. The fact that France is one of them clearly highlights that it is a prosperous nation.

4. There Is Good Infrastructure In France

Another reason why France is not a poor country is because there is good infrastructure throughout the nation.

A nation’s infrastructure, such as roads, railways, airports, utilities and tele-communication networks, are key to it being prosperous. Quality infrastructure is needed for people and goods to easily travel around a country. It is also needed for people to be connected. Poor countries have outdated and bad quality infrastructure. This makes doing business in these nations much harder – a key reason why they are poorer.

France has some of the best infrastructure in the world. Throughout the country there is a huge network of roads and railways. There are also more than 30 international airports in France. Across France people can access utilities, as well as good quality phone and internet connections, even in rural areas.

The quality of the infrastructure across France is a key indication it is not a poor country.

5. France Has A Good Education System

One reason why France is not a poor country is because it has a good education system.

Poor countries struggle to educate their children and young people. Governments of poorer nations lack the revenue needed to fund high quality schools across their countries. This means many children in poorer countries go without an education. This is especially the case for children from low-income families, or in remote areas.

In France, all children receive good quality schooling free of charge. Even in rural areas there are quality schools for children to attend. The French education system is ranked 5th in the world. This is a clear indication that the country is not poor.

As well as receiving good quality primary and secondary school, many young people in France are able to access higher education. France has some of the best universities in the world, including the University of Paris, Sorbonne Université, and the Université Montpellier. University education in France is subsidized by the state, meaning financial barriers do not block young people from poorer backgrounds getting a higher education. This is not the case in poorer countries.

The quality and accessibility of Frances education system is a major reason why the nation is not poor.

6. French People Can Access Quality Healthcare

A key reason why France is not a poor country is because French people can access quality healthcare.

As with education, poor nations are unable to provide good quality healthcare to all their people. Governments of poor countries do not have the money to subsidize healthcare. This means people in low-income nations must often pay themselves for medical treatment. If they cannot afford to, they often go without. In remote and rural locations, there are often no decent medical facilities as well.

France has an extremely good healthcare system. It is ranked 7th in the world. Almost everyone in France can access the medical assistance they need through insurance schemes or government subsidized healthcare centers. Not having enough money is not a barrier to healthcare in France. Across the country, even in remote and rural areas, people can access medical care.

The fact that France has such a good healthcare system, combined with the fact that essentially no one in France goes without medical care when they need it, shows it is not a poor country.

7. France Has Many Major Global Companies

A final reason why France is not a poor country is because it has many successful global companies.

Poor countries often have economies that rely almost entirely on natural resources or agriculture. Their economies cannot support large enterprises that can compete in the global market. Businesses in poorer countries struggle to produce high quality goods that people around the world want to buy. They also often fail to innovate, or develop new technologies.

France has some of the most successful companies in the world. Major global brands such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel, L’Oréal and Orange are French. Products and services made by French companies are consumed globally. In fact, being ‘made in France’ is often seen as a sign of quality and prestige. The success of French companies means they can provide high-skilled and well-paying jobs for French people. This is often not the case in poorer countries.

The world leading companies in France, combined with the high-quality products and services they produce, clearly shows that it is not a poor country.


Duncan is the founder of Global Affairs Explained. With a fascination for international relations. global events, history and geo-politics, Duncan established Global Affairs Explained to provide concise guides and original research on current and historical events.

Recent Posts