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Île-de-France wants to attract tourists but also foreign investors thanks to the Olympic Games

This summer, during the Olympic Games, 4 billion viewers will have their eyes fixed on Paris.

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Île-de-France wants to attract tourists but also foreign investors thanks to the Olympic Games

This summer, during the Olympic Games, 4 billion viewers will have their eyes fixed on Paris. Choose Paris Region, an international attractiveness agency for Ile-de-France, intends to take advantage of this “huge spotlight” to attract both tourists and foreign investors. In 2023, Ile-de-France welcomed 47.5 million tourists (8% compared to 2022) who generated 21.7 billion euros in revenue (11%). If the number of tourists does not reach the historic level of 2019, before the pandemic (-6%), revenues are approaching it (-1%). Concerning foreign investments, which are also within the scope of Choose Paris Région, 410 international investments have created 11,212 direct jobs in 2023 and Ile-de-France remains “the most attractive region in Europe”, according to Alexandra Dublanche, president of the agency.

In 2024, the Olympic Games (July 26-August 11) and Paralympic Games (August 28-September 8) are “a huge spotlight,” estimates Alexandra Dublanche, who emphasizes that fifteen million visitors are expected, including 13 million French people. “For the Rugby World Cup, we expected 400,000 visitors, we had 600,000, and we estimated the economic impact at 1 billion euros and we got 1.5 billion euros. We hope for the same effect for the Olympic Games,” she explains to AFP. “When we see that (the television series) Emily in Paris brings us thousands of tourists, the Olympics with the absolutely magnificent images that there will be and 4 billion viewers”, should also attract new tourists in the months, even the years to come, she anticipates.

But Choose Paris Region does not only intend to attract tourists, it intends to take advantage of the competition to attract new foreign investors, as it did during the Rugby World Cup. The president assures that “around a hundred international investment projects are linked to the Olympic Games” (flying taxi, carbon-free boats, drones, etc.). “Japan and India still have a very cultural, heritage vision of Ile-de-France, they do not have in mind that we are well positioned on quantum, artificial intelligence, etc., and that we are also an industrial land. This is the opportunity to show it,” she thinks.

The United States remains the region's leading foreign investor (1/4 of establishment projects) but "new countries are interested in Ile-de-France", such as Australia and India which, since Brexit, have been wondering about setting up in the European Union.

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