Paris ([paʁi] ( listen) in French, pronounced /ˈpærɪs/ in English) is the capital and largest city in France. It is situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region (or Paris Region, French: Région parisienne). The city of Paris, within its administrative limits largely unchanged since 1860, has an estimated population of 2,193,031 (January 2007), but the Paris metropolitan area has a population of 11,836,970 (January 2007), and is one of the most populated metropolitan areas in Europe.
In 2009 and 2010 Paris has been ranked among the three most important and influential cities in the world, among the first three "European cities of the future" - according to a research published by Financial Times and among the ten cities in the world "where to live in" according to the British review Monocle (June 2010). An important settlement for more than two millennia, Paris is today one of the world's leading business and cultural centres, and its influences in politics, education, entertainment, media, fashion, science, and the arts all contribute to its status as one of the world's major global cities. Paris also ranks among the 10 European greenest cities in 2010 and the projected top ten wealthiest cities in 2020 and 2025 together with London, São Paulo, Tokyo, New York City and Shanghai.
Paris and the Paris Region, with €552.7 billion in 2008, produces more than a quarter of the gross domestic product (GDP) of France. According to 2007 estimates, the Paris urban agglomeration is Europe's biggest city economy and the sixth largest in the world. The Paris Region hosts 38 of the Fortune Global 500 companies in several business districts, notably La Défense, the largest purpose-built business district in Europe. Paris also hosts many international organizations such as UNESCO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the informal Paris Club. According to the latest survey from Economist Intelligence Unit in 2010, Paris is the world's most expensive city to live in.
Paris is the first tourist destination in all the world with 45 million tourists annually, 27 million of whom are foreign visitors. The city and region contain numerous iconic landmarks, world-famous institutions and popular parks.
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