Wealthy French people are looking to London as a refuge from fresh taxes on high earners pledged by François Hollande – new elected president .
The “soak the rich” rhetoric that has punctuated the presidential campaign has prompted a sharp rise in the numbers weighing a move across the Channel, according to London-based wealth managers, lawyers and property agents specialising in French clients.
François Hollande wants to impose a tax rate of 75 per cent on income above €1m and at the launch of his bid in January said: “My true adversary in this battle has no name, no face, no party … It is the world of finance.”…
London’s status as an international finance hub as well as its proximity to France make it a natural choice for French professionals rattled by the campaign’s hostile mood towards the wealthy. Enclaves of French expatriates are firmly established in areas such as Belgravia and South Kensington, close to the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle, a popular secondary school.
The departure of France’s business people, entrepreneurs and the young for opportunities overseas is not a new phenomenon. When Nicolas Sarkozy visited London in 2007 he called for its French residents to return to a reformed France under his presidency. But the trend has been accelerated by the victory in Sunday’s decisive second round of the presidential election.