Reunion: Doing business & staying in touch

Doing business in Reunion

The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly; suits will only be required for the most formal of meetings. A sound knowledge of the French language will be useful, since there are no formal interpreter services available. Prices should be quoted in Euros, and all trade literature should be in French.

Office hours

Mon-Fri 0800-1200 and 1400-1800.


Sugar cane is the principal crop and export earner in this mainly agricultural economy. Other crops include vanilla, tobacco, and plants such as vétiver and ylang-ylang, used in tropical essences. Sugar and rum production are the principal industries; others include the manufacture of construction materials, metal goods, textiles and electronics.

The service sector, including transport, telecommunications, finance and tourism, provides three-quarters of the country's economic output. Tourism has grown particularly rapidly in recent years, and is now worth about US$300 million annually to the island's economy.

However, the Réunion economy is far from self-sustaining and relies on large injections of aid from France and, more recently, the European Union, to cover its trade and budgetary deficits (as an integral part of France, Réunion belongs to the EU). The most pressing problem for the government is a very high level of unemployment, which has been around 35 to 40% for the last decade.


US$4.6 billion.

Main exports

Sugar, rum and molasses, perfume essences and lobster.

Main imports

Manufactured goods, food, tobacco, machinery and equipment, raw materials and petroleum products.

Main trading partners

France, Japan, Comoros Islands, Germany and Italy.

Keeping in Touch in Reunion


There are no area codes.

Mobile phone

Roaming agreements exist with international mobile phone companies.


There are Internet cafes in towns throughout Réunion.


Airmail to Western Europe takes up to three weeks.


TV and radio services are provided by the French public overseas broadcaster, RFO.


• The two biggest dailies are the Journal de l'Ile de la Réunion and the Quotidien de la Réunion.
• Weekly periodicals include L'Economie de la Réunion and Témoignages.
• There are no English-language dailies.


• RFO Reunion is a public service, operated by Réseau France Outre-Mer.
Antenne Réunion is a private broadcaster.


RFO Réunion is a public service that operates radio stations.

Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.