Europe’s leading destination for international R&D investments

France is Europe’s no.1 destination for international research and development projects, with 144 international companies entering France to do research and development in 2018. This means that in 2018, over twice as many international companies started new R&D projects in France as in the UK and Germany combined. There are multiple reasons for this high level of investment in France, which include the infrastructure, quality of research and France’s generous R&D tax credit. 


France’s research tax credit

France has a unique research tax credit system which is the most generous in Europe. The French research tax credit which is available to companies doing research and development in France is ranked as the number 1 funding measure for European companies and is Europe’s most generous R&D tax system. Due to the research tax credit, France has the world’s lowest effective corporate tax for R&D operations

France’s research tax credit is available to all companies doing research and development in France regardless of size, industry and nationality. It covers 30% of all R&D expenses up to €100 million, as well as 5% above this threshold. The research tax credit is applied to all R&D operating costs at a rate of 50% and to investments in R&D operations at 75%. 

Research staff salaries are fully covered by the research tax credit, and it is applied to junior final-year doctoral and post-doctoral research staff salaries at a rate of 200% for 2 years, if they are on their first personal contract. This means that the research tax credit is effectively quadruple-counted in these cases. Any expenses that are outsourced to public-sector bodies are double-counted, meaning that in effect the research tax credit has twice as much value for your company. 

The research tax credit base covers all research and development spending expenses, SMEs working on innovative technologies can also apply for an additional innovation tax credit which is applied at a rate of 20% and covers expenses of up to €400,000 per year. 


Accessing France’s R&D tax credit 

The French research tax credit is available to all companies doing research and development in France. Geolink Expansion’s industry specialists are able to advise on which French regions have ecosystems beneficial to your company’s development, depending on your industry sector. We can then put you in touch with local economic development experts, who will support you in every aspect of your expansion to France, including accessing the research tax credit. 


Your contact

Poppy Newall, international project manager, +33 434 083 095

France’s Research Tax Credit


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