With a total surface area of 9.6 million square km (approx. 3.7 million square miles) spanning four time zones, the USA is the third-largest country in the world (after Russia and Canada). An economic, cultural and military powerhouse, it plays a leading role on the world stage.
The USA has been a land of immigration for centuries and continues to be a part of the world in which almost all countries, cultures and religions come together under the same flag. Diverse yet deeply united, the fifty US states form a multi-faceted country where you would need to live for several years to understand the habits and customs of each region.
US market potential
With a GDP of more than 18 trillion dollars, the US economy alone represents 20% of the global economy. After the financial crisis of 2009, the US introduced a large-scale fiscal and monetary stimulus plan that has proved very successful: the US GDP has grown steadily since 2012 (between 2 and 3% per year) and unemployment has dropped from 10% in 2009 to 4.9% six years later.
The USA, a service economy
The US economy is largely based on services. This sector represents more than 75% of GDP and employs over 80% of the workforce.
The industrial sector contributes more than 20% of GDP and includes a wide variety of activities. The most important of these are the manufacture of electrical and electronic machinery, chemical products, industrial machinery, and the agri-food and automotive sectors.
The abundance of natural resources also means the USA is a leader in the production of several minerals, liquid natural gas, aluminium, electricity and nuclear energy. It is also the world’s third-largest oil producer.
The US agricultural sector is the biggest in the world. It is characterised by high productivity and the use of modern technology. However, agriculture accounts for only 1.4% of America’s GDP.
France, the USA sixth-largest supplier
Although it is famously self-sufficient because of its huge domestic market, the USA is nonetheless extremely open to international trade, both with its closest neighbours (Canada and Mexico) and more distant regions (Europe and Asia).
The USA is France’s sixth-largest customer and fifth-largest supplier, and has a trade surplus of 5 million USD with France. Petroleum products and hydrocarbons represent 90% of this surplus. The bulk of US imports from France in 2014 came from the transport equipment sector (28%), mechanical equipment, electrical, electronic and computer equipment (19%), agri-food products (11%), chemicals (10%) and pharmaceuticals (7%).
Meanwhile, 75% of US exports to France were transport equipment (26%), mechanical equipment, electrical, electronic and computer equipment (19%), energy (16%) and pharmaceutical products (13%).