Export sales of music produced in France dropped 5% in 2007, to 26.1 million units, according to French export office Bureau Export.

But with the French physical domestic market dropping 18.5% in 2007, according to research company GfK, export sales now represent 36% of the overall French market, compared with 28% in 2006. Bureau Export also unveiled digital sales for the first time, which amounted to 20.9 million units in 2007.

"99% of them were singles," stresses Bureau Export executive manager Sophie Mercier.

The United States was France's biggest export territory in 2007 outside of French-speaking countries, accounting for 14% of sales abroad. These sales were led by Canadian singer Feist (produced in France), Manu Chao and Air, according to Mercier. In 2006, Japan led the list.

The Bureau Export is a non-profit organization jointly funded by the music sector and by the French government to enhance the presence of locally-produced music internationally. In 2008, it supported 6,000 concerts abroad and the international release of over 1,600 records.

Due to a more time-consuming reporting process, French export sales are unveiled with a one-year delay.