In an official document the Prime Minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, encouraged the usage of open source, for its obvious benefits. Of course, the action is meant to reduce the governmental costs up to 10%, but nevertheless there also some other benefits :
– the open source sector employs in 2012 about 30.000 people in France
– the rate of growth is around 30% yearly
– can be used as instrument of dialog with the companies
Because of crisis, France is searching competitive ways. They were in ’90 the European leaders in software (as outsourcing, engineering and implementations), but they lost the rail at the beginning of 2000, bad decisions after the .Com Bubble, leaving the place for USA and their famous Silicon Valley. Maybe is time for Paris to react, of course, easy, French-way, starting with Open Source, and recovering a lot of unemployed people in software/internet/IT industries.
For the moment, the reality is they are learning. The good side is they are good and fast learners.