Pfizer and AstraZeneca announce new investments of nearly $1 billion in France

PARIS (Reuters) – Leading healthcare companies Pfizer and AstraZeneca announced on Sunday new investments in France worth a total of nearly $1 billion, ahead of the start of this year’s annual ‘Choose France’ business summit.

Pfizer said it would invest 500 million euros ($538.5 million) in France to build up its research and development work in the country, while AstraZeneca announced an investment of $388 million for its site at Dunkirk.

Their investment pledges came as President Emmanuel Macron prepared to kick off on Monday the annual ‘Choose France’ event aimed at wooing big overseas businesses and investors.

France announced earlier on Sunday 100 new jobs in Paris at Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley, and investments from other firms such as German aviation company Lilium.

Macron wants to burnish Paris’ role as a top European business capital, although it has traditionally lagged New York and London on a global scale.

The closely watched Z/Yen survey of global financial centres, published in March, ranked New York as the world’s top financial centre, with London in second place. The survey ranked Paris in 14th position.

($1 = 0.9286 euros)

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Additional reporting by Elizabeth Pineau; Editing by Jan Harvey)