National spending in 2004 on research and development reached 34.58 billion euros, 2.2 of the GDP, which places France in 3rd Position amongst counties of of the OECD. The government objective for 2010 is to increase the RD budget to 3% of the GDP.
The Public sector, that is in charge of running the main national research centers, contribute up to 46.5%. 53.5% comes from companies who focus on high technology sectors ( Automotive, Telecoms, Pharmaceutical, Aeronautic and Chemical).
In 2003 France had 346000 researchers and full time workers. In 2004.17400 patents were registered in France. Between 2004 and 2005 the number of registration increased of 2.9% The highest number of registrations come from the automotive sector with Renault (1st place with 607 patents) and Peugeot-Citroen (3rd place with 386 patents). L'Oreal reached the 2nd place with 525 patents.
RD centers benefit from a favorable tax status. The recent set up of 400 research centers for international companies is proof of the interest they generate for the ''Technopole'' network and the Science parks. Currently half of the European research centers are based in France.
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