Interview

"We feel more than ever the need to work together"

The CCFN opens its doors to Florence Robine, French Ambassador to Norway.

H.E.Mme Florence Robine became the French Ambassador to Norway on November the 10th. 

Could you please share with our readers a few words about your background? 

I come from the academic field, with a scientific background as I was a professor of physics for many years. I was then in charge of many French regions in Metropolitan France and overseas, in the field of education, higher education and research. I took part in several international missions for the European Commission, UNESCO, and the OECD. I also worked a lot with companies and industries, especially in the field of training and talent recognition. In 2019, I was accredited as Ambassador of France to Bulgaria, a position I have just left to join you in Oslo. 

 

What image of Norway did you have before taking your position as Ambassadress of France to Norway?

I never had the chance to come to Norway before this appointment. I was delighted to be offered this position, it is a great opportunity for me to work in a country that is part of the European continent, while having a unique position. It is also a country that many French people dream about, known for its nature, its great landscapes, and its intriguing lifestyle that I am looking forward to knowing better.

 

What are the main subjects you wish to deal with as a priority at the start of your new position as an ambassadress? 

The war in Ukraine, and the many crises it has brought about, has obviously completely changed the European political landscape. We feel more than ever the need to work together and in solidarity on all issues that affect the security and well-being of our citizens. I am obviously thinking about the energy question, and our common desire to ensure Europe's autonomy in this area while working on the ecological transition.

Many other subjects will be on my agenda: support for innovation, cooperation in the economic sector of course, but also in the educational, scientific and cultural sectors. I would like us to pay particular attention to the youth of our countries, to listen to their aspirations and work with them on the future of our continent. 

 

France has made big progress in terms of attractiveness under the leadership of President Macron. What message would you like to pass on to representatives of Norwegian companies who could be interested in establishing a company in France?

The reforms carried out in France since 2017 under the leadership of President Macron have strengthened our attractiveness for Norwegian companies.

For example, France's attractiveness to foreign direct investment (FDI) increased again this year, with France ranking first in the EY attractiveness barometer in 2021 for the third year in a row.

It is the result of a lot of measures that have been decided and implemented by the French government since 2017 to reduce corporate taxes and labor costs, and to support competitiveness, notably with the France Relance plan, the France 2030 Investment Plan and the Programme d’investissements d’avenir PIA4. 

All these measures explained why France remained the world's fifth largest exporter of goods and services in 2021. The rebound in 2021 was in particular historic in services, driven in particular by strong growth in transport services and tourism. 

So the message that I would like to pass on to Norwegian companies is therefore very simple: invest in France; find new industrial partners there; rely on the services and support from trustworthy advisors like Business France Invest; doing business in France has never been easier and we have so much in common that we would be stronger if we join forces in facing local and global challenges together; in other words, “be glocal” – ie global and local- and the Team France Invest will do its best to facilitate your business journey!

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