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    Sunday, May 12, 2024

    Amazon, Morgan Stanley, Pfizer to Announce French Investments

    Pfizer said it would invest €500 million in France to build up its research and development presence in the country while AstraZeneca announced an investment of $388 million for its site at Dunkirk.

    Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Sunday that the new office from Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley, dubbed as its new European campus, would create 100 more jobs in Paris.

    He added that German aviation firm Lilium would invest €400 million in a factory while Swiss-based firm KL1 would commit €300 million of funds in a nickel refining site. Those two investments, combined, could create more than 1,000 jobs.

    Le Maire was speaking as President Emmanuel Macron was set to host the annual Choose France event on Monday aimed at wooing overseas businesses and investors.

    It added that GSK would also announce new investments while Accenture would announce plans to set up new jobs in the artificial intelligence sector.

    'Europe needs money'

    The Choose France event comes as France, the euro zone’s second-biggest economy, faces concerns over its budget deficit while its growth in the first quarter was just 0.2 percent.

    Le Maire said France and the European Union as a whole still had to do more against competition from China and the US.

    He said that at an upcoming EU meeting in Brussels, he would reaffirm the need for a capital markets union to facilitate investments into new areas of the economy such as renewable energy and artificial intelligence.

    "New industries and the new economy need massive amounts of capital. We urgently need to take concrete steps to get the capital markets union going. I will be able to go to Brussels at the start of this week to once again make the case for this capital markets union," he told reporters.

    "Europe needs money. If not, it will continue to lose out in terms of productivity to the United States and China," he added.

    While Macron wants to burnish Paris's role as a top European business capital, the closely watched Z/Yen survey of global financial centres, published in March, put Paris in 14th place. Paris was placed behind Frankfurt, with New York chosen as the world's top financial hub.

    Last month, French oil major TotalEnergies said it was looking at having its primary stock market listing in New York.

    Le Maire said that as part of the Choose France event – which last year raised €13 billion of foreign investments – he would host meetings on Monday with the chief executives of JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America, among others.

    "These roundtables will give us an opportunity to once again reach out to the big financial investors so that they can continue to set up sites in Paris and finance the major industrial and economic projects on which we are working with the president," said Le Maire.

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