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France and Czech Republic

Political relations

The relationship between France and the Czech Republic is encompassed by our EU membership. Our bilateral cooperation is governed by a strategic partnership agreement signed in 2008, for which the new action plan 2018-2022 was signed at the Élysée Palace by the President of the Republic and the Czech Prime Minister, Andrej Babiš, in France for the commemorations of the centenary of the creation of the Czechoslovak army, held at Darney in the Vosges Department on 29 June 2018.

Visits

Recent French bilateral visits to the Czech Republic:

  • Official visit by the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron (26-27 October 2018);
  • Visit by the Minister for European Affairs, Nathalie Loiseau (10-11 May 2018);
  • Visit by the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian (9 June 2017 – participation in the Defence & Security Conference in Prague);
  • Visit by the Minister of Labour, Employment, Vocational Training and Social Dialogue, Myriam El Khomri (20-21 February 2017);
  • Official visit by the President of the Republic, François Hollande (30 November 2016);
  • Visit by the Minister of State for European Affairs, Harlem Désir (26 May 2016);
  • Visit by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Laurent Fabius (24 August 2015 – participation in the conference of Czech ambassadors);
  • Official visit by the Prime Minister, Manuel Valls (8-9 December 2014).

Recent Czech bilateral visits to France:

  • Visit by the State Secretary for European Affairs, Milena Hrdinková (20 February 2019);
  • Visit by the Prime Minister, Andrej Babiš (11 November 2018);
  • Visit by the Prime Minister, Andrej Babiš (30 June 2018);
  • Visit by the State Secretary for European Affairs, Aleš Chmelař (30 January 2018);
  • Visit by the State Secretary for European Affairs, Aleš Chmelař (21 September 2017);
  • Visits by the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Michaela Marksová (21 December 2016 and 2 March 2017);
  • Visit by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lubomír Zaorálek (1 June 2016);
  • Visit by the Prime Minister, Bohuslav Sobotka (24 March 2016);
  • Visit by the State Secretary for European Affairs, Tomáš Prouza (29 April 2015;
  • Official visit by the President, Miloš Zeman (8-10 September 2014).

Economic relations

France is one of the leading investors in the Czech Republic, with 500 companies employing 100,000 people and a foreign direct investment stock of €8 billion in 2017. It is also the country’s fifth-largest trading partner, with a total of €10 billion in trade in 2017. This relationship does however post a structural deficit for France (€2 billion in 2017) because of the extent of French investment and the highly industrialized Czech economy.

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

The French cultural network in the Czech Republic is made up of the Institut Français in Prague, five Alliance Française branches in the regions (Brno, České Budějovice, Liberec, Ostrava, Pardubice, Plzeň), and the French high school in Prague (806 students in 2016). Linguistic cooperation also draws on the existence of four bilingual sections in Czech high schools (with “LabelFrancEducation” endorsement) and two Czech sections in the Lycée Carnot (Dijon) and Lycée Alphonse Daudet (Nîmes) high schools in France. Academic and research cooperation benefits from the expanded activities of the French Centre for Research in the Social Sciences (CEFRES) set up in 2015 in the premises of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, with the support of Charles University in Prague and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS). The first Czechoslovak Republic was born in France: on 30 June 1918, French President Poincaré presented the flag of the new Czechoslovakia to 6,000 Czech and Slovak legionnaires, at Darney in the Vosges. On 15 October that year, France recognized the provisional Czechoslovak government, established on Rue Bonaparte in Paris. In the presence of the Minister for the Armed Forces, Florence Parly, the Czech Prime Minister, André Babiš, and his Slovak counterpart, Peter Pellegrini, celebrated the centernary of the creation of the Czechoslovak legions at Darney in the Vosges Department on 30 June 2018.

Ambassador of France in Prague: Mr Roland Galharague (Februrary 2017).
Ambassador of the Czech Republic in Paris: Mr Petr Drulák (Februrary 2017).
Chair of the France-Czech Republic Friendship Group of the French National Assembly: Mr Guillaume Larrivé.
Chair of the France-Czech Republic Friendship Group of the French Senate: Mr Philippe Nachbar.

Updated: 20 February 2019