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Diplomacy in Action

U.S. Relations With France


Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs
Fact Sheet
December 17, 2013

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More information about France is available on the France Page and from other Department of State publications and other sources listed at the end of this fact sheet.

U.S.-FRANCE RELATIONS

The United States and France established diplomatic relations in 1778 following the United States' declaration of independence from Great Britain, and France provided key assistance to the United States as an ally during its war of independence. The Vichy Government of France severed diplomatic relations with the United States in 1942 during World War II; relations were normalized in 1944. The United States and France are among the five permanent members of the UN Security Council (P5).

Relations between the United States and France are active and friendly. The two countries share common values and have parallel policies on most political, economic, and security issues. Differences are discussed frankly and have not generally been allowed to impair the pattern of close cooperation that characterizes relations between the two countries.

The U.S. and France work closely on many issues, most notably in combating terrorism, efforts to stem the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and on regional problems, including in Africa, the Middle East, the Balkans, and Central Asia. As one of the P5+1 powers and as a leader of the European Union, France is working to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. In the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, France fully supports U.S. engagement in the peace process. France is one of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's (NATO) top five troop contributors. The French support NATO modernization efforts and are leading contributors to the NATO Response Force.

U.S. Assistance to France

The United States provides no development assistance to France.

Bilateral Economic Relations

France is a member of the European Union and is the United States’ third-largest trading partner in Europe (after Germany and the U.K.). Trade and investment between the United States and France are strong. On average, over $1 billion in commercial transactions, including sales of U.S. and French foreign affiliates, take place every day. U.S. exports to France include industrial chemicals, aircraft and engines, electronic components, telecommunications, computer software, computers and peripherals, analytical and scientific instrumentation, medical instruments and supplies, and broadcasting equipment. The United States is the top destination for French investment and the United States is the largest foreign investor in France. The United States and France have a bilateral convention on investment and a bilateral tax treaty addressing, among other things, double taxation and tax evasion.

France's Membership in International Organizations

France and the United States belong to a number of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, G-20, G-8, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization. France also is an observer to the Organization of American States.

Bilateral Representation

The position of U.S. Ambassador to France is currently vacant; other principal embassy officials are listed in the Department's Key Officers List.

France maintains an embassy in the United States at 4101 Reservoir Rd. NW, Washington, DC 20007 (tel. 202-944-6000).

More information about France is available from the Department of State and other sources, some of which are listed here:

Department of State France Page
Department of State Key Officers List
CIA World Factbook France Page
U.S. Embassy: France
History of U.S. Relations With France
Human Rights Reports
International Religious Freedom Reports
Trafficking in Persons Reports
Narcotics Control Reports
Investment Climate Statements
U.S. Census Bureau Foreign Trade Statistics
Export.gov International Offices Page
Travel and Business Information



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