The French presidential election took place a few weeks ago, and I am glad it is over. I was getting bored of hearing the same things all day, every day, in the media – although it is always an interesting time. Hearing the candidates and politicians or reading about global politics always gets me thinking: What is the impact on businesses?

Politics and business are very complex subjects, and politicians often have no real experience in business. Business owners, executives, and politicians sometimes come from different worlds, making communication and decisions more complex. Political decisions can also be very unpredictable. Politicians with widely different ideas can be in charge within the same decade, and decisions can be impacted by diplomatic events, natural disasters, pandemics, demographic trends, etc.

The impact of politics on sales

For example, during the Covid-19 pandemic, governments all around the world set up different policies for what was considered essential. While we can agree that grocery stores and pharmacies are essentials, what about home improvement stores? People  stuck at home during lockdowns had time to work on renovating their houses. While some countries kept home improvement stores open most of the time, others shut them down. In countries where home improvement stores were shut down, customers bought a lot more items online. Local economies were widely impacted by the logical decisions politics took but also by the most questionable choices. France closed its nightclubs for a very long time but decided to keep swingers’ clubs open. I can only assume the impact on the national economy was minor but greatly impacted the politicians’ daily lives.

New technologies

Politics can even influence the development of new technologies by supporting new developments. This had a major impact on technologies, such as green energies, self-driving cars, and medical research. For example, many governments gave tax breaks to those using green and renewable energy sources. 

How fiscal and administrative policies impact businesses

Fiscal policies have a major impact on businesses. Large and small businesses are impacted by taxes, which affect their ability to invest and be more competitive. High taxes is one of the highest-ranked problems reported by business owners. Fiscal policies affect businesses in different ways. For example, France considered implementing a tax for ecommerce businesses to protect small brick and mortar stores. Import tariffs are another example of a tax regulated by politics that have a huge impact on companies importing and exporting goods. Finally, bureaucracy can make it harder or sometimes easier for businesses to operate. It isn’t rare to hear business owners complaining about the administration slowing them down. Corruption can also be an issue in some countries.


Looking at how politics impact businesses in more detail would take a whole book, but it is already interesting to see which areas are impacted. This is especially useful in deciding which countries to operate, where to import/export goods, or how to plan for the future. Over a business lifetime, owners can face different administrations with different policies, will have to adapt to the new regulations, and can take advantage of the new positive trends.


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