- Market entry
- Forms and conditions of operation on the market
- Marketing and Communications
- Issues of intellectual property protection
- Public procurement market
- Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
- Visas, fees, specific conditions of travel to the territory
- Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
- Fairs and events
Both France and the Czech Republic are part of the common market of the European Union with the same EU regulations for mutual trade. However, strong competition must be expected when trying to enter the French market. Established companies are very protective of the position they have built there. If the exporter decides to pursue this market, he must expect a long haul and be prepared for lengthy negotiations, to overcome demanding administration and elements of protectionism. Although the French market is saturated in almost all directions, Czech companies have a chance to establish themselves here, especially if they focus on the technological maturity of production and the flexibility of production. The most important business center is the Paris area, where more than half of the retail turnover is realized, other centers are the areas of Lyon, Toulouse, Marseille and Bordeaux. Lille, Strasbourg and their surroundings are also important. There are still numerous small and medium-sized businesses in France, but the decisive factor is the power of hypermarkets and supermarkets, and recently the importance of mail order has also been growing. The main factors affecting sales include advertising events outside the store (in the press, on the local radio station, in means of transport), product demonstrations in the store, special promotional discounts, open days, tastings, loyalty cards, etc. In accordance with global marketing and advertising trends, the importance of promotion on the Internet and social networks is growing. Communication in French, market research, regional customs and local customs are worthwhile. Great emphasis is placed on the quality of production and products and certification according to ISO 9000 and CE standards. The relevant programs administered by the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic, the agencies PaulTrade and CzechTourism contribute to the establishment of new business contacts in the form of reimbursement of part of the costs of participation of Czech companies in French fairs, and for various presentation events the multi-departmental Proped program administered by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. According to cheeroutdoor.com, the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Paris, the honorary consulates of the Czech Republic in eight major French cities, and the Paris offices of the PaulTrade and CzechTourism agencies handle inquiries regarding potential business contacts. In addition, the PaulTrade agency provides a cost-effective service for verifying the interest of potential French customers.
Forms and conditions of operation on the market
It is common to use local representatives to operate on the French market. In the event of a larger turnover, it may be worthwhile to establish a separate or joint entity. Optional legal forms and conditions for their establishment and operation are listed on the website of the CFE registration centers of the Ministry of Economy, which also list the relevant center according to the planned subject of activity, seat and legal form of the established entity, including recommendations for its selection. The suitability of individual forms depends on the turnover achieved, the nature of the product or service, storage requirements, after-sales service, the company’s intentions and preferences, the proven practice of its expansion and the current context. Registration can also be done at the so-called Guichet-entreprises internet counter.
Marketing and communication
Specialized agencies serve for marketing and communication. An institutionally organized tip on them can be found in the AACC ‘s branch and territorially divided internet overview approx. 200 member agencies of the French industry association Association des agences conseils en communication. Placarding is not allowed, but otherwise the range of promotional methods is wide, for example advertising in mass media including the Internet, advertising in mass transport, distribution of advertising printed matter to homes, prominent banners behind shop windows and inside stores or exhibition and fair events. France has more than two hundred years of exhibition history. This is a proven, time-tested form of establishing contacts. To multiply the effect of participation in such an event, exhibitors send invitations to their stand in advance to potential customers. An overview of the most important fairs and exhibitions in France can be found on the website of the French Fairthe Czech branch of the French association Promosalons for the international promotion of professional French trade fairs. Promotion is desirable in the French language, as well as brochures, instructions for use and labels on products. For example, instead of “Made in…”, “Fabriqué en…” is mentioned.
Issues of intellectual property protection
Intellectual property is protected by law (Code de la propriété intellectuelle). The INPI office deals with the protection of industrial property, which ensures the issuance of patents, trademarks, plans and models and provides information on the protection of industrial property. It actively contributes to the creation of policies in the field of industrial property protection and the fight against counterfeiting. INPI can propose legislation and administrative procedures to the government necessary to combat counterfeiting. It also represents France in international bodies and when concluding bilateral or multilateral agreements with foreign countries. He also provides his expertise and recommendations. According to the comparative index of the international organization Property Rights Alliance for the year 2020, France is in 23rd place in the protection of intellectual property out of 131 evaluated countries (the Czech Republic is in 27th place). In case you need any legal actions, there is a list of law offices on the website of our consular department in Paris, which informed that they operate in Czech and French. A similar list is on the website of the French-Czech Chamber of Commerce.
Public procurement market
Public contracts consist of purchases by the state, state institutions, state enterprises or self-government bodies. For smaller contracts, the method of publishing and awarding the public contract is left to the discretion of the contracting authority. As a rule, they are published in the regional press, on the Internet or on a bulletin board. Notices about them can be taken into the commercial Internet database Marchés online. The contracting authority is obliged to publish larger contracts in the official gazette of public contracts BOAMP, whose website also contains the rules regarding public contracts and the search program for contracts by keywords, periods and regions. The contracting authority is obliged to publish the largest contracts in the Official Journal of the European Union. On the Internet, their announcements are available in the TED database. Threshold values for individual types of public contracts and the differences in their awarding are listed on the website of the French state administration’s Procédures de marchés publics.
Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
Usual payment terms are with a maturity of 30 to 90 days. Payments are delayed in about 20% of cases, of which in about 5% the delay is longer than 1 month. The ways of resolving commercial disputes depend on the provisions of the commercial contract. France, like the Czech Republic, is a member of the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards. The costs of legal proceedings and lawyers’ fees in France are high, so it is advisable to use all other available means in priority. However, if necessary, the website of the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Paris provides a list of law firms that have informed that they act in both Czech and French. A similar list is on the website of the French-Czech Chamber of Commerce.
Visas, fees, specific conditions for traveling to the territory
France, like the Czech Republic, is a member state of the European Union with free movement of persons between its member states. For minors under the age of 18 traveling unaccompanied by an adult, the French authorities may require the written consent of their parents to travel abroad. Conditions for travel to French overseas territories may vary. The current status is shown in the France-Visas internet database , where information is searched according to the destination of the trip and the traveler’s situation. Limits for duty-free import and conditions for importing animals, plants, medicines, etc. for personal use are listed on the website of the French customs administration in the Vous voyagez chapter. Further information and possible recommendations for trips to France can be found on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republicin the “states and territories” database under the combination of the search terms “France” and “Travel”. Between the airport of the capital city of Paris and its center, where our embassy is also located, there is a connection by (sub)urban rail transport, for most possible destination addresses including the embassy with transfers between lines of various types of rail transport ( RER, Métro, Tramway ) and with the possibility of purchasing timed tickets for the entire network.
Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
Citizens of the Czech Republic are employed in France under the same conditions as citizens of other European Union states, i.e. without the need for a work permit or residence permit. The conditions are detailed on the website of the French state administration in the chapter Droits au séjour par le travail. At the same time, French labor regulations apply to all of them, in particular the basic working hours of 35 hours per week (with deviations in some fields), the minimum gross hourly wage (€10.57 for 2022) and the usual wage in the given field, minimum length of leave and working conditions according to regulations and collective agreements for the given field. A special case is the temporary posting of workers. Czech entities can temporarily send a worker to France with whom they have an employment contract or an agreement on work activities, and the worker has been registered with the Czech Social Security Administration for at least one month. During the posting period, the employment relationship between the posting company and the employee continues to exist, and after completing the task, the employee returns to the posting employer in the Czech Republic. The worker must not be hired only to perform work in France. A temporary posting can be a posting for the purpose of providing services in industry, trade, trade, free profession or agriculture in France on the basis of a contract concluded between the sending company and the party for whom the services are intended, education or the fulfillment of a certain task in an organization or company in France belonging to the same group, execution of work for a sending company in France (for example, a cross-section of a forest owned in France by a Czech company) and the temporary posting of workers to a company in France through intermediary work. The sending entity notifies the temporary posting of workers in advance to the locally competent labor inspectorate (Direction départementale de l’emploi, du travail et des solidarités). The above-mentioned French labor regulations also apply to temporarily posted workers, and workers must have a medical (European health card) and social insurance (form issued by the Czech Social Security Administration). You can find detailed information on the temporary posting of workers to France on the websiteEmbassy of the Czech Republic in Paris.
Fairs and events
An overview of the most important fairs and exhibitions in France is presented on the website of the French Fair of the Czech representation of the French association Promosalons for the international promotion of professional French fairs. The plan for the 2nd half of 2022 and the 1st half of 2023 as of the end of April 2022 is also shown as a sample:
13/06/2022 – 17/06/2022 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
Fair dedicated to the defense and security sector in land and air areas. World number one in its category.
23/09/2022 – 26/09/2022 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
International fair of ophthalmic optics.
MONDIAL DU BÂTIMENT – BATIMAT – INTERCLIMA – IDEOBAIN
3/10/2022 – 6/10/2022 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
International construction fair.
BATIMAT- Technology and services in the construction industry
INTERCLIMA – Products and services in the field of HVAC, heating and air conditioning
IDÉOBAIN – New trends in the field of bathrooms and sanitary technology
15/10/2022 – 19/10/2022 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
Fair of the food industry.
18/10/2022 – 22/10/2022 Paris, Expo Porte de Versailles
International fair of automotive aftermarket and services for mobility.
6/11/2022 – 10/11/2022 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
International fair of technologies and solutions for efficient and sustainable agriculture
Paris 6/11/2022 – 10/11/2022 Paris, Expo Porte de Versailles
International fair in the field of HoReCa.
Paris 21/11/2022 – 24/11/2022 Paris, northern Villepinte exhibition center
Fair of packaging technology.
PARIS DESIGN WEEK
January 2023 Paris, Villepinte North Exhibition Center
International trade fair for design professionals
The events planned in France by the PaulTrade agency are listed on its website in the Events Calendar database under the search term “France” and the events of the CzechTourism agency on its website in the B2B events, workshops and fairs section.