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Paris, France (#69)




Paris[a] is the capital and most populous city of France. With an official estimated population of 2,102,650 residents as of 1 January 2023 in an area of more than 105 km2 (41 sq mi), Paris is the fourth-most populated city in the European Union and the 30th most densely populated city in the world in 2022. Since the 17th century, Paris has been one of the world's major centres of finance, diplomacy, commerce, culture, fashion, and gastronomy. For its leading role in the arts and sciences, as well as its early and extensive system of street lighting, in the 19th century, it became known as the City of Light.


Paris is the centre of the Île-de-France region, or Paris Region, with an official estimated population of 12,271,794 inhabitants on 1 January 2023, or about 19% of the population of France. The Paris Region had a GDP of €765 billion (US$1.064 trillion, PPP) in 2021, the highest in the European Union. According to the Economist Intelligence Unit Worldwide Cost of Living Survey, in 2022, Paris was the city with the ninth-highest cost of living in the world.


Paris is a major railway, highway, and air-transport hub served by two international airports: Charles de Gaulle Airport (the third-busiest airport in Europe) and Orly Airport. Opened in 1900, the city's subway system, the Paris Métro, serves 5.23 million passengers daily; it is the second-busiest metro system in Europe after the Moscow Metro. Gare du Nord is the 24th-busiest railway station in the world and the busiest outside Japan, with 262 million passengers in 2015. Paris has one of the most sustainable transportation system and is one of the only two cities in the world that received the Sustainable Transport Award twice.


Paris is especially known for its museums and architectural landmarks: the Louvre received 8.9. million visitors in 2023, on track for keeping its position as the most-visited art museum in the world. The Musée d'Orsay, Musée Marmottan Monet and Musée de l'Orangerie are noted for their collections of French Impressionist art. The Pompidou Centre Musée National d'Art Moderne, Musée Rodin and Musée Picasso are noted for their collections of modern and contemporary art. The historical district along the Seine in the city centre has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1991.


Paris hosts several United Nations organizations including UNESCO, and other international organizations such as the OECD, the OECD Development Centre, the International Bureau of Weights and Measures, the International Energy Agency, the International Federation for Human Rights, along with European bodies such as the European Space Agency, the European Banking Authority and the European Securities and Markets Authority. The football club Paris Saint-Germain and the rugby union club Stade Français are based in Paris. The 81,000-seat Stade de France, built for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, is located just north of Paris in the neighbouring commune of Saint-Denis. Paris hosts the annual French Open Grand Slam tennis tournament on the red clay of Roland Garros. The city hosted the Olympic Games in 1900 and 1924, and will host the 2024 Summer Olympics. The 1938 and 1998 FIFA World Cups, the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup, the 2007 Rugby World Cup, as well as the 1960, 1984 and 2016 UEFA European Championships were also held in the city. Every July, the Tour de France bicycle race finishes on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées in Paris.


Etymology


The ancient oppidum that corresponds to the modern city of Paris was first mentioned in the mid-1st century BC by Julius Caesar as Luteciam Parisiorum ('Lutetia of the Parisii'), and is later attested as Parision in the 5th century AD, then as Paris in 1265. During the Roman period, it was commonly known as Lutetia or Lutecia in Latin, and as Leukotekía in Greek, which is interpreted as either stemming from the Celtic root lukot- ('mouse'), or from luto- ('marsh, swamp').


The name Paris is derived from its early inhabitants, the Parisii, a Gallic tribe from the Iron Age and the Roman period. The meaning of the Gaulish ethnonym remains debated. According to Xavier Delamarre, it may derive from the Celtic root pario- ('cauldron'). Alfred Holder interpreted the name as 'the makers' or 'the commanders', by comparing it to the Welsh peryff ('lord, commander'), both possibly descending from a Proto-Celtic form reconstructed as kwar-is-io-. Alternatively, Pierre-Yves Lambert proposed to translate Parisii as the 'spear people', by connecting the first element to the Old Irish carr ('spear'), derived from an earlier kwar-sā. In any case, the city's name is not related to the Paris of Greek mythology.


History


Origins


The Parisii, a sub-tribe of the Celtic Senones, inhabited the Paris area from around the middle of the 3rd century BC. One of the area's major north–south trade routes crossed the Seine on the île de la Cité, which gradually became an important trading centre. The Parisii traded with many river towns (some as far away as the Iberian Peninsula) and minted their own coins.


The Romans conquered the Paris Basin in 52 BC and began their settlement on Paris's Left Bank. The Roman town was originally called Lutetia (more fully, Lutetia Parisiorum, "Lutetia of the Parisii", modern French Lutèce). It became a prosperous city with a forum, baths, temples, theatres, and an amphitheatre.


By the end of the Western Roman Empire, the town was known as Parisius, a Latin name that would later become Paris in French. Christianity was introduced in the middle of the 3rd century AD by Saint Denis, the first Bishop of Paris: according to legend, when he refused to renounce his faith before the Roman occupiers, he was beheaded on the hill which became known as Mons Martyrum (Latin "Hill of Martyrs"), later "Montmartre", from where he walked headless to the north of the city; the place where he fell and was buried became an important religious shrine, the Basilica of Saint-Denis, and many French kings are buried there.


Clovis the Frank, the first king of the Merovingian dynasty, made the city his capital from 508. As the Frankish domination of Gaul began, there was a gradual immigration by the Franks to Paris and the Parisian Francien dialects were born. Fortification of the Île de la Cité failed to avert sacking by Vikings in 845, but Paris's strategic importance—with its bridges preventing ships from passing—was established by successful defence in the Siege of Paris (885–886), for which the then Count of Paris (comte de Paris), Odo of France, was elected king of West Francia. From the Capetian dynasty that began with the 987 election of Hugh Capet, Count of Paris and Duke of the Franks (duc des Francs), as king of a unified West Francia, Paris gradually became the largest and most prosperous city in France.


High and Late Middle Ages to Louis XIV


By the end of the 12th century, Paris had become the political, economic, religious, and cultural capital of France. The Palais de la Cité, the royal residence, was located at the western end of the Île de la Cité. In 1163, during the reign of Louis VII, Maurice de Sully, bishop of Paris, undertook the construction of the Notre Dame Cathedral at its eastern extremity.


After the marshland between the river Seine and its slower 'dead arm' to its north was filled in from around the 10th century, Paris's cultural centre began to move to the Right Bank. In 1137, a new city marketplace (today's Les Halles) replaced the two smaller ones on the Île de la Cité and Place de Grève (Place de l'Hôtel de Ville). The latter location housed the headquarters of Paris's river trade corporation, an organisation that later became, unofficially (although formally in later years), Paris's first municipal government.


In the late 12th century, Philip Augustus extended the Louvre fortress to defend the city against river invasions from the west, gave the city its first walls between 1190 and 1215, rebuilt its bridges to either side of its central island, and paved its main thoroughfares. In 1190, he transformed Paris's former cathedral school into a student-teacher corporation that would become the University of Paris and would draw students from all of Europe.


With 200,000 inhabitants in 1328, Paris, then already the capital of France, was the most populous city of Europe. By comparison, London in 1300 had 80,000 inhabitants. By the early fourteenth century, so much filth had collected inside urban Europe that French and Italian cities were naming streets after human waste. In medieval Paris, several street names were inspired by merde, the French word for "shit".


During the Hundred Years' War, Paris was occupied by England-friendly Burgundian forces from 1418, before being occupied outright by the English when Henry V of England entered the French capital in 1420; in spite of a 1429 effort by Joan of Arc to liberate the city, it would remain under English occupation until 1436.


In the late 16th-century French Wars of Religion, Paris was a stronghold of the Catholic League, the organisers of 24 August 1572 St. Bartholomew's Day massacre in which thousands of French Protestants were killed. The conflicts ended when pretender to the throne Henry IV, after converting to Catholicism to gain entry to the capital, entered the city in 1594 to claim the crown of France. This king made several improvements to the capital during his reign: he completed the construction of Paris's first uncovered, sidewalk-lined bridge, the Pont Neuf, built a Louvre extension connecting it to the Tuileries Palace, and created the first Paris residential square, the Place Royale, now Place des Vosges. In spite of Henry IV's efforts to improve city circulation, the narrowness of Paris's streets was a contributing factor in his assassination near Les Halles marketplace in 1610.


During the 17th century, Cardinal Richelieu, chief minister of Louis XIII, was determined to make Paris the most beautiful city in Europe. He built five new bridges, a new chapel for the College of Sorbonne, and a palace for himself, the Palais-Cardinal. After Richelieu's death in 1642, it was renamed the Palais-Royal.


Due to the Parisian uprisings during the Fronde civil war, Louis XIV moved his court to a new palace, Versailles, in 1682. Although no longer the capital of France, arts and sciences in the city flourished with the Comédie-Française, the Academy of Painting, and the French Academy of Sciences. To demonstrate that the city was safe from attack, the king had the city walls demolished and replaced with tree-lined boulevards that would become the Grands Boulevards. Other marks of his reign were the Collège des Quatre-Nations, the Place Vendôme, the Place des Victoires, and Les Invalides.


18th and 19th centuries


Paris grew in population from about 400,000 in 1640, to 650,000 in 1780. A new boulevard named the Champs-Élysées extended the city west to Étoile, while the working-class neighbourhood of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine on the eastern side of the city grew increasingly crowded with poor migrant workers from other regions of France.


The Panthéon, a major landmark on the Rive Gauche, was completed in 1790.


Paris was the centre of an explosion of philosophic and scientific activity, known as the Age of Enlightenment. Diderot and d'Alembert published their Encyclopédie in 1751, and the Montgolfier Brothers launched the first manned flight in a hot air balloon on 21 November 1783. Paris was the financial capital of continental Europe, and the primary European centre of book publishing, fashion and the manufacture of fine furniture and luxury goods.


In the summer of 1789, Paris became the centre stage of the French Revolution. On 14 July, a mob seized the arsenal at the Invalides, acquiring thousands of guns, and stormed the Bastille, which was a principal symbol of royal authority. The first independent Paris Commune, or city council, met in the Hôtel de Ville and elected a Mayor, the astronomer Jean Sylvain Bailly, on 15 July.


Louis XVI and the royal family were brought to Paris and incarcerated in the Tuileries Palace. In 1793, as the revolution turned increasingly radical, the king, queen and mayor were beheaded by guillotine in the Reign of Terror, along with more than 16,000 others throughout France. The property of the aristocracy and the church was nationalised, and the city's churches were closed, sold or demolished. A succession of revolutionary factions ruled Paris until 9 November 1799 (coup d'état du 18 brumaire), when Napoleon Bonaparte seized power as First Consul.


The population of Paris had dropped by 100,000 during the Revolution, but after 1799 it surged with 160,000 new residents, reaching 660,000 by 1815. Napoleon replaced the elected government of Paris with a prefect that reported directly to him. He began erecting monuments to military glory, including the Arc de Triomphe, and improved the neglected infrastructure of the city with new fountains, the Canal de l'Ourcq, Père Lachaise Cemetery and the city's first metal bridge, the Pont des Arts.


During the Restoration, the bridges and squares of Paris were returned to their pre-Revolution names; the July Revolution in 1830 (commemorated by the July Column on the Place de la Bastille) brought to power a constitutional monarch, Louis Philippe I. The first railway line to Paris opened in 1837, beginning a new period of massive migration from the provinces to the city. In 1848, Louis-Philippe was overthrown by a popular uprising in the streets of Paris. His successor, Napoleon III, alongside the newly appointed prefect of the Seine, Georges-Eugène Haussmann, launched a huge public works project to build wide new boulevards, a new opera house, a central market, new aqueducts, sewers and parks, including the Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes. In 1860, Napoleon III annexed the surrounding towns and created eight new arrondissements, expanding Paris to its current limits.


During the Franco-Prussian War (1870–1871), Paris was besieged by the Prussian Army. Following several months of blockade, hunger, and then bombardment by the Prussians, the city was forced to surrender on 28 January 1871. After seizing power in Paris on 28 March, a revolutionary government known as the Paris Commune held power for two months, before being harshly suppressed by the French army during the "Bloody Week" at the end of May 1871.


In the late 19th century, Paris hosted two major international expositions: the 1889 Universal Exposition, which featured the new Eiffel Tower, was held to mark the centennial of the French Revolution; and the 1900 Universal Exposition gave Paris the Pont Alexandre III, the Grand Palais, the Petit Palais and the first Paris Métro line. Paris became the laboratory of Naturalism (Émile Zola) and Symbolism (Charles Baudelaire and Paul Verlaine), and of Impressionism in art (Courbet, Manet, Monet, Renoir).


20th and 21st centuries


By 1901, the population of Paris had grown to about 2,715,000. At the beginning of the century, artists from around the world including Pablo Picasso, Modigliani, and Henri Matisse made Paris their home. It was the birthplace of Fauvism, Cubism and abstract art, and authors such as Marcel Proust were exploring new approaches to literature.


During the First World War, Paris sometimes found itself on the front line; 600 to 1,000 Paris taxis played a small but highly important symbolic role in transporting 6,000 soldiers to the front line at the First Battle of the Marne. The city was also bombed by Zeppelins and shelled by German long-range guns. In the years after the war, known as Les Années Folles, Paris continued to be a mecca for writers, musicians and artists from around the world, including Ernest Hemingway, Igor Stravinsky, James Joyce, Josephine Baker, Eva Kotchever, Henry Miller, Anaïs Nin, Sidney Bechet and Salvador Dalí.


In the years after the peace conference, the city was also home to growing numbers of students and activists from French colonies and other Asian and African countries, who later became leaders of their countries, such as Ho Chi Minh, Zhou Enlai and Léopold Sédar Senghor.


On 14 June 1940, the German army marched into Paris, which had been declared an "open city". On 16–17 July 1942, following German orders, the French police and gendarmes arrested 12,884 Jews, including 4,115 children, and confined them during five days at the Vel d'Hiv (Vélodrome d'Hiver), from which they were transported by train to the extermination camp at Auschwitz. None of the children came back. On 25 August 1944, the city was liberated by the French 2nd Armoured Division and the 4th Infantry Division of the United States Army. General Charles de Gaulle led a huge and emotional crowd down the Champs Élysées towards Notre Dame de Paris, and made a rousing speech from the Hôtel de Ville.


In the 1950s and the 1960s, Paris became one front of the Algerian War for independence; in August 1961, the pro-independence FLN targeted and killed 11 Paris policemen, leading to the imposition of a curfew on Muslims of Algeria (who, at that time, were French citizens). On 17 October 1961, an unauthorised but peaceful protest demonstration of Algerians against the curfew led to violent confrontations between the police and demonstrators, in which at least 40 people were killed. The anti-independence Organisation armée secrète (OAS) carried out a series of bombings in Paris throughout 1961 and 1962.


In May 1968, protesting students occupied the Sorbonne and put up barricades in the Latin Quarter. Thousands of Parisian blue-collar workers joined the students, and the movement grew into a two-week general strike. Supporters of the government won the June elections by a large majority. The May 1968 events in France resulted in the break-up of the University of Paris into 13 independent campuses. In 1975, the National Assembly changed the status of Paris to that of other French cities and, on 25 March 1977, Jacques Chirac became the first elected mayor of Paris since 1793. The Tour Maine-Montparnasse, the tallest building in the city at 57 storeys and 210 m (689 ft) high, was built between 1969 and 1973. It was highly controversial, and it remains the only building in the centre of the city over 32 storeys high. The population of Paris dropped from 2,850,000 in 1954 to 2,152,000 in 1990, as middle-class families moved to the suburbs. A suburban railway network, the RER (Réseau Express Régional), was built to complement the Métro; the Périphérique expressway encircling the city, was completed in 1973.


Most of the postwar presidents of the Fifth Republic wanted to leave their own monuments in Paris; President Georges Pompidou started the Centre Georges Pompidou (1977), Valéry Giscard d'Estaing began the Musée d'Orsay (1986); President François Mitterrand had the Opéra Bastille built (1985–1989), the new site of the Bibliothèque nationale de France (1996), the Arche de la Défense (1985–1989) in La Défense, as well as the Louvre Pyramid with its underground courtyard (1983–1989); Jacques Chirac (2006), the Musée du quai Branly.


In the early 21st century, the population of Paris began to increase slowly again, as more young people moved into the city. It reached 2.25 million in 2011. In March 2001, Bertrand Delanoë became the first socialist mayor. He was re-elected in March 2008. In 2007, in an effort to reduce car traffic, he introduced the Vélib', a system which rents bicycles. Bertrand Delanoë also transformed a section of the highway along the Left Bank of the Seine into an urban promenade and park, the Promenade des Berges de la Seine, which he inaugurated in June 2013.


In 2007, President Nicolas Sarkozy launched the Grand Paris project, to integrate Paris more closely with the towns in the region around it. After many modifications, the new area, named the Metropolis of Grand Paris, with a population of 6.7 million, was created on 1 January 2016. In 2011, the City of Paris and the national government approved the plans for the Grand Paris Express, totalling 205 km (127 mi) of automated metro lines to connect Paris, the innermost three departments around Paris, airports and high-speed rail (TGV) stations, at an estimated cost of €35 billion. The system is scheduled to be completed by 2030.


Geography

Location


Paris is located in northern central France, in a north-bending arc of the river Seine whose crest includes two islands, the Île Saint-Louis and the larger Île de la Cité, which form the oldest part of the city. The river's mouth on the English Channel (La Manche) is about 233 mi (375 km) downstream from the city. The city is spread widely on both banks of the river.

Overall, the city is relatively flat, and the lowest point is 35 m (115 ft) above sea level. Paris has several prominent hills, the highest of which is Montmartre at 130 m (427 ft).


Excluding the outlying parks of Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes, Paris covers an oval measuring about 87 km2 (34 sq mi) in area, enclosed by the 35 km (22 mi) ring road, the Boulevard Périphérique. The city's last major annexation of outlying territories in 1860 not only gave it its modern form but also created the 20 clockwise-spiralling arrondissements (municipal boroughs). From the 1860 area of 78 km2 (30 sq mi), the city limits were expanded marginally to 86.9 km2 (33.6 sq mi) in the 1920s. In 1929, the Bois de Boulogne and Bois de Vincennes forest parks were officially annexed to the city, bringing its area to about 105 km2 (41 sq mi). The metropolitan area is 2,300 km2 (890 sq mi).


Measured from the 'point zero' in front of its Notre-Dame cathedral, Paris by road is 450 km (280 mi) southeast of London, 287 km (178 mi) south of Calais, 305 km (190 mi) southwest of Brussels, 774 km (481 mi) north of Marseille, 385 km (239 mi) northeast of Nantes, and 135 km (84 mi) southeast of Rouen.


Climate


According to the Köppen climate classification, Paris has an oceanic climate, typical of western Europe. This climate type features cool winters that have frequent rain and overcast skies, and mild to warm summers. Very hot and very cold temperatures and weather extremes are rare in this type of climate.


Summer days are usually mild and pleasant with average temperatures between 15 and 25 °C (59 and 77 °F), and a fair amount of sunshine. Each year, however, there are a few days when the temperature rises above 32 °C (90 °F). Longer periods of more intense heat sometimes occur, such as the heat wave of 2003 when temperatures exceeded 30 °C (86 °F) for weeks, reached 40 °C (104 °F) on some days and rarely cooled down at night. Spring and autumn have, on average, mild days and cool nights but are changing and unstable.


Surprisingly warm or cool weather occurs frequently in both seasons. In winter, sunshine is scarce; days are cool, and nights are cold but generally above freezing with low temperatures around 3 °C (37 °F). Light night frosts are however quite common, but the temperature seldom dips below −5 °C (23 °F). The city sometimes sees light snow or flurries with or without accumulation.


Paris has an average annual precipitation of 641 mm (25.2 in), and experiences light rainfall distributed evenly throughout the year. However, the city is known for intermittent, abrupt, heavy showers. The highest recorded temperature was 42.6 °C (108.7 °F) on 25 July 2019, and the lowest was −23.9 °C (−11.0 °F) on 10 December 1879.


Housing


The most expensive residential street in Paris in 2018 by average price per square metre was Avenue Montaigne, at 22,372 euros per square metre. The total number of residences in the City of Paris in 2011 was 1,356,074, up from a former high of 1,334,815 in 2006. Among these, 1,165,541 (85.9 percent) were main residences, 91,835 (6.8 percent) were secondary residences, and the remaining 7.3 percent were empty (down from 9.2 percent in 2006).


Sixty-two percent of its buildings date from 1949 and before, 20 percent were built between 1949 and 1974, and only 18 percent of the buildings remaining were built after that date. Two-thirds of the city's 1.3 million residences are studio and two-room apartments. Paris averages 1.9 people per residence, a number that has remained constant since the 1980s, but it is much less than Île-de-France's 2.33 person-per-residence average. Only 33 percent of principal residence Parisians own their habitation (against 47 percent for the entire Île-de-France): the major part of the city's population is a rent-paying one. Social or public housing represented 19.9 percent of the city's total residences in 2017. Its distribution varies widely throughout the city, from 2.6 percent of the housing in the wealthy 7th arrondissement, to 39.9 percent in the 19th arrondissement.


In February 2019, a Paris NGO conducted its annual citywide count of homeless persons. They counted 3,641 homeless persons in Paris, of whom twelve percent were women. More than half had been homeless for more than a year. 2,885 were living in the streets or parks, 298 in train and metro stations, and 756 in other forms of temporary shelter. This was an increase of 588 persons since 2018.


Suburbs


Aside from the 20th-century addition of the Bois de Boulogne, the Bois de Vincennes and the Paris heliport, Paris's administrative limits have remained unchanged since 1860. A greater administrative Seine department had been governing Paris and its suburbs since its creation in 1790, but the rising suburban population had made it difficult to maintain as a unique entity. To address this problem, the parent "District de la région parisienne" ('district of the Paris region') was reorganised into several new departments from 1968: Paris became a department in itself, and the administration of its suburbs was divided between the three new departments surrounding it. The district of the Paris region was renamed "Île-de-France" in 1977, but this abbreviated "Paris region" name is still commonly used today to describe the Île-de-France, and as a vague reference to the entire Paris agglomeration. Long-intended measures to unite Paris with its suburbs began on 1 January 2016, when the Métropole du Grand Paris came into existence.


Paris's disconnect with its suburbs, its lack of suburban transportation, in particular, became all too apparent with the Paris agglomeration's growth. Paul Delouvrier promised to resolve the Paris-suburbs mésentente when he became head of the Paris region in 1961: two of his most ambitious projects for the Region were the construction of five suburban "villes nouvelles" ("new cities") and the RER commuter train network. Many other suburban residential districts (grands ensembles) were built between the 1960s and 1970s to provide a low-cost solution for a rapidly expanding population: These districts were socially mixed at first, but few residents actually owned their homes (the growing economy made these accessible to the middle classes only from the 1970s). Their poor construction quality and their haphazard insertion into existing urban growth contributed to their desertion by those able to move elsewhere and their repopulation by those with more limited possibilities.


These areas, quartiers sensibles ("sensitive quarters"), are in northern and eastern Paris, namely around its Goutte d'Or and Belleville neighbourhoods. To the north of the city, they are grouped mainly in the Seine-Saint-Denis department, and to a lesser extreme to the east in the Val-d'Oise department. Other difficult areas are located in the Seine valley, in Évry et Corbeil-Essonnes (Essonne), in Mureaux, Mantes-la-Jolie (Yvelines), and scattered among social housing districts created by Delouvrier's 1961 "ville nouvelle" political initiative.


The Paris agglomeration's urban sociology is basically that of 19th-century Paris: the wealthy live in the west and southwest, and the middle-to-working classes are in the north and east. The remaining areas are mostly middle-class dotted with wealthy islands located there due to reasons of historical importance, namely Saint-Maur-des-Fossés to the east and Enghien-les-Bains to the north of Paris.


Economy


The economy of the City of Paris is based largely on services and commerce; of the 390,480 enterprises in the city, 80.6 percent are engaged in commerce, transportation, and diverse services, 6.5 percent in construction, and just 3.8 percent in industry. The story is similar in the Paris Region (Île-de-France): 76.7 percent of enterprises are engaged in commerce and services, and 3.4 percent in industry.


At the 2012 census, 59.5% of jobs in the Paris Region were in market services (12.0% in wholesale and retail trade, 9.7% in professional, scientific, and technical services, 6.5% in information and communication, 6.5% in transportation and warehousing, 5.9% in finance and insurance, 5.8% in administrative and support services, 4.6% in accommodation and food services, and 8.5% in various other market services), 26.9% in non-market services (10.4% in human health and social work activities, 9.6% in public administration and defence, and 6.9% in education), 8.2% in manufacturing and utilities (6.6% in manufacturing and 1.5% in utilities), 5.2% in construction, and 0.2% in agriculture.


The Paris Region had 5.4 million salaried employees in 2010, of whom 2.2 million were concentrated in 39 pôles d'emplois or business districts. The largest of these, in terms of number of employees, is known in French as the QCA, or quartier central des affaires; in 2010, it was the workplace of 500,000 salaried employees, about 30 percent of the salaried employees in Paris and 10 percent of those in the Île-de-France. The largest sectors of activity in the central business district were finance and insurance (16 percent of employees in the district) and business services (15 percent). The district also includes a large concentration of department stores, shopping areas, hotels and restaurants, as well a government offices and ministries. The second-largest business district in terms of employment is La Défense, just west of the city. In 2010, it was the workplace of 144,600 employees, of whom 38 percent worked in finance and insurance, 16 percent in business support services. Two other important districts, Neuilly-sur-Seine and Levallois-Perret, are extensions of the Paris business district and of La Défense. Another district, including Boulogne-Billancourt, Issy-les-Moulineaux and the southern part of the 15th arrondissement, is a centre of activity for the media and information technology.


The top French companies listed in the Fortune Global 500 for 2021 all have their headquarters in the Paris Region; six in the central business district of the City of Paris; and four close to the city in the Hauts-de-Seine Department, three in La Défense and one in Boulogne-Billancourt. Some companies, like Société Générale, have offices in both Paris and La Défense. The Paris Region is France's leading region for economic activity, with a GDP of 765 billion (of which €253 billion was Paris city).[189] In 2021, its GDP ranked first among the metropolitan regions of the EU and its per-capita GDP PPP was the 8th highest. While the Paris region's population accounted for 18.8 percent of metropolitan France in 2019, the Paris region's GDP accounted for 32 percent of metropolitan France's GDP.


The Paris Region economy has gradually shifted from industry to high-value-added service industries (finance, IT services) and high-tech manufacturing (electronics, optics, aerospace, etc.). The Paris region's most intense economic activity through the central Hauts-de-Seine department and suburban La Défense business district places Paris's economic centre to the west of the city, in a triangle between the Opéra Garnier, La Défense and the Val de Seine. While the Paris economy is dominated by services, and employment in manufacturing sector has declined sharply, the region remains an important manufacturing centre, particularly for aeronautics, automobiles, and "eco" industries.


In the 2017 worldwide cost of living survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit, based on a survey made in September 2016, Paris ranked as the seventh most expensive city in the world, and the second most expensive in Europe, after Zürich. In 2018, Paris was the most expensive city in the world with Singapore and Hong Kong. Station F is a business incubator for startups, noted as the world's largest startup facility.


Tourism


Tourism continued to recover in the Paris region in 2022, increasing to 44 million visitors, an increase of 95 percent over 2021, but still 13 percent lower than in 2019.


Greater Paris, comprising Paris and its three surrounding departments, received a record 38 million visitors in 2019, measured by hotel arrivals. These included 12.2 million French visitors. Of the foreign visitors, the greatest number came from the United States (2.6 million), United Kingdom (1.2 million), Germany (981 thousand) and China (711 thousand).


In 2018, measured by the Euromonitor Global Cities Destination Index, Paris was the second-busiest airline destination in the world, with 19.10 million visitors, behind Bangkok (22.78 million) but ahead of London (19.09 million). According to the Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau, 393,008 workers in Greater Paris, or 12.4 percent of the total workforce, are engaged in tourism-related sectors such as hotels, catering, transport and leisure.


The city's top cultural attractions in 2022 were the Louvre Museum (7.7 million visitors), the Eiffel Tower (5.8 million visitors), the Musée d'Orsay (3.27 million visitors) and the Centre Pompidou (3 million visitors).


In 2019, Greater Paris had 2,056 hotels, including 94 five-star hotels, with a total of 121,646 rooms. Also in 2019, in addition to the hotels, Greater Paris had 60,000 homes registered with Airbnb. Under French law, renters of these units must pay the Paris tourism tax. The company paid the city government 7.3 million euros in 2016.


A minuscule fraction of foreign visitors suffer from Paris syndrome when their experiences do not meet expectations.

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