A varied economy featuring clusters


Marseille-Provence is a dynamic and competitive region, a land of opportunity. Strategically positioned for traffic flowing through Europe on North/South and East/West transversal axes, it is also a natural gateway to the Mediterranean.

Vigorous growth in Marseille-Provence is boosted by world-ranking clusters: the aeronautical industry, the oil industry and other cutting-edge sectors such as micro-electronics, the cosmetics industry, the bio-pharmaceutical industry and research centresGlobal companies have chosen Marseille-Provence for their head offices: CMA-CGM (third biggest shipping company in the world)EADS-Eurocopter (world’s leading helicopter constructor) and L'Occitane (luxury cosmetics).

Marseille-Fos is the Number 1 cargo port on the Mediterranean, the biggest in France and the 4th biggest in Europe. It attracts substantial foreign investments (China, U.A.E., etc) and aims to become the leading container port on the Mediterranean.

  • World’s leading helicopter manufacturer (EADS-Eurocopter based in Marseille-Provence).
  • World leader in nuclear research with the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER). 16 billion euros invested in the ITER project.
  • Leader in South Europe for micro-electronics.
  • No.2 region in France for R&D.
  • No.1 region for the food industry in the South of France.
  • First multimodal transport centre in France – air-sea-rail-river-road.
  • 25% of steel-producing industries in France.
  • 30% of oil refining industries in France.


Worldwide appeal for tourists


Provence is famous around the world. The Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region ranks 4th in the list of regions that foreign clients find most attractive (behind Paris, Catalonia and Andalusia). The huge diversity of its landscapes and the richness of life in Provence speak for themselves: lavender fields, vineyards, the French Riviera, Mediterranean cuisine, skiing…


Key statistics (2012):

  • 31 million holiday-makers, including 5.7 million foreign tourists
  • 221 million hotel nights (4th highest in Europe), including 43 million in Marseille
  • 14 billion euros in sales linked to tourism
  • 148,000 jobs linked to tourism
  • 1 billion euros invested each year in tourism


A major Mediterranean cruise port


As France’s historical gateway to sea-faring activities on the Mediterranean, the port of Marseille naturally plays the leading role in the cruise sector in France. Investments have been set aside to guarantee growth in Marseille over coming years (new cruise terminal, extending the breakwater).

Key statistics:

  • 1.15 million cruise passengers expected in 2013 (+100% since 2008)
  • 2 cruise terminals (Costa & MSC are shareholders in one of the terminals)
  • Capacity for simultaneously handling 5 mega-ships + 2 luxury cruise liners
  • All of the main cruise companies dock in Marseille: MSC, Costa, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, Croisière de France...
  • Biggest dry dock in Europe (Forme10) for working on the biggest ocean liners in the world.


Marseille, European Capital of Culture 2013


At the crossroads of many cultures, Marseille is completely cosmopolitan. This aspect of the city is being highlighted during European Capital of Culture year.

Its cultural heritage also makes Marseille a capital of the entire Mediterranean Basin.

 In 2013, Marseille is opening its doors to the world.

Key statistics:

  • 400 exhibitions
  • 15 million visitors expected 
  • 3 million extra foreign tourists expected
  • 100 million euros invested
  • 50% increase in hotel capacity between 2009 and 2013