French HSBC tax case report reveals US$5b in Swiss funds

HSBC says a former employee stole data which revealed the names of people holding money at its Swiss arm. Photo: SCMP

France needs to beef up its methods of fighting tax evasion, according to a parliamentary report on a probe into HSBC that revealed US$5 billion (HK$38.8 billion) of undeclared assets in thousands of Swiss bank accounts.

Thursday, 11 July, 2013, 11:16am

France plans stake sales to fund public investment

French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault unveils the government’s investment scheme. Photo: AFP

France will use further sales of state shares in firms to help finance a new 12 billion euro (HK$119.5 billion) public investment drive, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said.

10 Jul 2013 - 11:08am

'Racist attack' on Chinese students in France sparks widespread outrage

Chinese tourists visit the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Photo: AFP

China’s internet users reacted with outrage to reports of a racist assault on six Chinese students studying in France, while others denounced the victims as children of wealthy officials. The oenology students were attacked early on Saturday in the wine-producing Bordeaux region, France’s interior ministry said, describing the violence as an act of xenophobia.

17 Jun 2013 - 8:35am 26 comments

France and Japan to work together on development of military equipment

French President Francois Hollande is applauded as he prepares to deliver a speech to the parliament in Tokyo. Photo: AFP

Japan has expressed concern over French exports to China of equipment that potentially might have military uses, including the sale last year of equipment used to help helicopters land on ships.

8 Jun 2013 - 3:59am 1 comment

French jobless total hits new record, in blow to Hollande

The locked gates at an entrance to the Gandrange ArcelorMittal steelworks, which closed in 2009. The number of jobless in France hit an all-time high in April. Photo: Reuters

French President Francois Hollande said he was sticking to a target of cutting down unemployment by year-end, after fresh data showed that the number of jobless hit a new all-time high in April.

31 May 2013 - 11:46am

France's gay marriage law draws thousands of protesters to Paris

A demonstrator holds a placard with a portrait of French President Francois Hollande during the protest march in Paris. Photo: AFP

One of President Francois Hollande's campaign pledges, the bill allowing same-sex marriage and adoption was voted into law last Saturday after months of protests across a country that has been bitterly divided over the issue.

27 May 2013 - 5:59am

GI liberators were big trouble in 1944 Normandy, says new book

US soldiers during the Allied landings in 1944. Photo: AP

Far removed from accounts of selfless derring-do, many US soldiers were viewed by the French as sex-obsessed thugs who had been promised an "erotic adventure" - a mission that was fulfilled, much to the chagrin of locals.

27 May 2013 - 5:59am 1 comment

IMF chief Christine Lagarde escapes charges for now

Christine Lagarde

IMF chief Christine Lagarde avoided immediate charges but was named an "assisted witness" after French prosecutors questioned her for two days over a state payout to a disgraced tycoon when she was finance minister.

26 May 2013 - 6:51am

Plan for French universities to teach in English sparks a war of words

Minister of Higher Education and Research Genevieve Fioraso. Photo: Reuters

Jacques Chirac once stormed out of an EU summit because a French business leader was speaking it, Nicolas Sarkozy lamented his lack of it and Francois Hollande makes small talk in it but is conscious of his accent.

The global spread of the English language has long been a sore point in Paris politics.

Now a new battleground has appeared in the linguistic war.

13 May 2013 - 5:22am

France seeks to improve export performance

Laurent Fabius

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius highlighted the need for his country to regain its competitiveness in order to rebalance bilateral trade. "Although our trade deficit with China decreased by €1.5 billion (HK$15.2 billion) in 2012, it is still very large at about €26 billion, which is 40 per cent of our overall trade deficit," Fabius told a press conference at the Hong Kong Foreign Correspondents' Club.

7 May 2013 - 3:56am

Bienvenue! France welcomes Hong Kong youth in new working-holiday scheme

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. Photo: Sam Tsang

Young Hongkongers will get a chance to spend up to a year in France, thanks to a new working-holiday scheme starting in July. The bilateral programme will open 200 places each year to applicants aged between 18 and 30. It allows them to take up employment in their host region to finance their stay.

7 May 2013 - 5:47am 1 comment

Paris bids for top spot in Europe's yuan business

Pierre Moscovici

French Minister of the Economy and Finance Pierre Moscovici spoke to the South China Morning Post on Friday during a visit to Hong Kong after he joined a delegation led by President Francois Hollande to Beijing. Moscovici said France would be the most suitable location for an offshore yuan trading centre in Europe because many big international companies were based there.

29 Apr 2013 - 4:16am

Two killed in France's Reims city as apartment block collapses after blast

Rescue workers search through the rubble of the collapsed building after an explosion partly destroyed the apartment block. Photo: EPA

Two people died and 14 were injured yesterday when part of an apartment block in the French city of Reims collapsed after an explosion, just three weeks after a similar tragedy not far away.

Authorities in the Champagne region said the "probable" cause of the accident, which saw the extremity of a four-storey building containing some 10 flats crash down, was a gas blast.

29 Apr 2013 - 3:29am

China news round-up: French president in Beijing, Xinjiang officials urged to be vigilant

Francois Hollande and Xi Jinping arrive for a joint declaration ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on April 25, 2013. Photo: AFP

French President in BeijingLe Figaronotes that François Hollande's visit is his first trip to China and the first formal state visit in Beijing of Xi Jinping's presidency.Le Monde

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

China, France stress a multipolar world as Hollande visits Beijing

Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, meet Francois Hollande and his partner, Valerie Trierweiler, in Beijing yesterday. Photo: AFP

China and France pledged yesterday to promote a new international order that was not dominated by any single superpower. President Xi Jinping told his French counterpart, Francois Hollande, he was confident they could develop a new type of comprehensive strategic partnership. 

26 Apr 2013 - 4:53am 7 comments