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If France is actor in the international arena in the 21st century?
Material posted: Publication date: 08-04-2018

In order to answer the question, you should pay attention to the strategy of the foreign policy of France, which will trace the development of specific actions of the country in the international arena. They may depend on a number of factors that determine a country's politics, contribute to the building of a vector of development of relations of France with its neighbours and leading actors of world politics.

First of all, you should start with the major foreign ministries in France, implementation of foreign policy. The main foreign policy body in France is the Ministry of foreign relations or the Ministry of foreign Affairs (FR. Ministère des Affaires étrangères). Currently, the Minister is Jean-Yves Le Drian. The main objectives of this Ministry are: informing the President and Prime Minister of France on the international situation and the situation in other countries; development strategy of France's foreign policy; the implementation and coordination of international relations of the French Republic, as well as to protect the interests of French citizens abroad.

Second, in addition to the foreign Ministry, which is the main instrument of foreign policy, we should not forget about the President of France. It is the head of state determines the policy of the country. The current President of France, Emmanuel Jean-Michel, frédérique macron is one of the key figures in the political system of the country. Despite the fact that France is semi-presidential, and power is distributed among the three traditional branches, the powers of the President are extensive. He appoints the Prime Minister, is head of the armed forces and can dissolve the National Assembly. Emmanuel macron has become the President of France not so long ago, may 14 in 2017 after winning the election in the second round of the presidential elections over, marine Le Pen, the current leader of the political party "national front". The main thesis of the electoral program of Emmanuel Macron, concerning foreign policy, are "preservation of the single currency, the market and the Schengen agreement within the European Union"; "limitation of foreign investment in the country's economy". However, it should be noted that the Makron supports a trade agreement between the European Union and Canada; and migration policy of France, "input selection", which will increase the number of visas issued to talented students.

The third factor influencing foreign policy of France is policy of security and defense. Special attention is the current President of France Emmanuel macron in his election programme devoted to European security issues. Very ambitious is "defensive military plan Macron" calling for the building of defensive Alliance between Germany and France through the creation of a unified European defense Fund, where can be funded by the joint armed forces. All this implies the creation of a single European armed forces, which could become a guarantor of European security against new threats.

The fourth factor influencing the country's foreign policy, is foreign trade. If to speak about foreign trade of France, we can see that today the country occupies the sixth place in global imports of goods and fourth largest in the world in the export of industrial products. In addition, France is a major exporter of food products among other countries of the EU, taking, at the same time, the second largest in the world after the United States. France exports grain, meat, milk, dairy products, wines. The country's share in world trade has not changed the last 25 years, and the share of exports in French GDP exceeds 25 %.

The differences of events in different parts of the world can not be overlooked the key actors in world politics. In this context, France, as one of the main actors in world politics, are required to respond to changes in the global political situation. As a result, all the world's events remain under the scrutiny of the world community, we can give an estimate of how much influence the above factors on the current foreign policy of France.

For example, France is a member of the "Norman Quartet", which deals with the settlement of the conflict between the unrecognized republics in Eastern Ukraine and Federal authorities. During this conflict, France considers its national interests, which are determined by geopolitical considerations and all the factors that affect foreign policy. The mechanism is as follows: the President determines the fundamental position of the country on this issue, Ministry of foreign Affairs develops instruments and provides the negotiation process, at the same time, the process of coordination of foreign policy actions of the EU and NATO. Plus, before taken any decision, France listens to their entrepreneurs and the Ministry of economy, which give an estimate of the possible consequences for the economy of France from the adoption of certain decisions. Largely on this mechanism determine the fate of the various conflict situations in Europe and other parts of the world.

Based on the above studies it can be concluded that France is quite an influential actor in the international arena, has the political weight and has the competitive qualities in comparison with other countries, due to traditions of foreign policy cooperation with European countries. In addition, do not forget about the special position of the French language, which is common in all parts of the world. But the main role in determining foreign policy, of course, belongs to the described factors, which are the result of synthesis of characteristics of the political system of the country and its socio-political traditions.


  1. Information about the economy of France:
  2. Official website of the President of France Emmanuel Makron:
  3. Official website of the government of France:

Bakhisheva Elvin

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