In the aftermaths of World War I and World War II, France lost wealth, colonial territories, labor force, and previously held prestige or “grandeur,” a favorite term of Charles de Gaulle. Yet, France has emerged as one of the leaders of the European Union, particularly as far as economic policy and cooperation with other European nations such as Germany is concerned, while also maintaining strong diplomatic ties with the United States. In 2009, France ranked 28th in the world in per capita income ($32,800) and is listed 8th overall on the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP's) Human Development Report list of countries with Very High Human Development, placing 7th in terms of life expectancy at birth (81 years). According to the World Factbook, France's ...

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