Readings & Rankings - UK tops the Continental pops - European directors vote Britain the most business-friendly.
The often admirable Gallic refusal to compromise has earned France the unenviable title of 'most difficult European country to do business with', according to 29% of respondents in a survey of 1,500 company directors in seven European countries.
Despite what may be the end of the beginning for New Labour at home, Tony Blair's third way is still winning plaudits for the UK on the Continent. Its political climate was rated likely to be the most business-friendly over the next three years by 48% of those polled. The same survey also reveals the UK to be in the vanguard when it comes to flexible working practices.
No doubt Euro-enthusiasts will be relieved to note the generally high regard in which the UK is held. Sceptics can take solace in the fact that the rest of Europe doesn't enjoy dealing with the French, either.
Hardest to do business with:
Likely to have best political climate for business over next 3 years:
Source: UPS Europe Business Monitor.