France

France

Expands and clarifies its FDI screening regime

01 Apr 2020

The Decree No. 2019-1590 of 31 December 2019 expands and clarifies the foreign investment screening regime in France along with implementing a Ministerial Order. It enters into force on 1 April 2020.

The new regulation lowers the thresholds triggering mandatory investment reviews, from 33,33% to 25%. Furthermore, it broadens the sectoral scope of the mechanism by adding print and digital media, food safety, and critical technologies (e.g. cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, robotics, additive manufacturing, semiconductors, quantum technologies, and energy storage). Additionally, the screening will focus on ascertaining whether a foreign investor has links to a foreign government or a foreign public body. Thus, investors are obligated to provide information in their applications on any potential significant capital ties or financial support received from a State or public body outside the European Union over the last five years. The decree also sets the per diem financial penalty at EUR 50,000, which the Minister may impose on investors in addition to other injunctions.