The foreign shop-owners within the city limits of Paris Emmanuel MA MUNG and Michelle GUILLON The number of foreign shop-owners, of which nearly two thirds are originally from North Africa (Maghreb) is rapidly increasing and the proportion they represent within the foreign working population has a tendency to grow as well. They are most concentrated within the city limits of Paris, particularly in the North East corner of town and in the nearby Northern suburbs. Even though the location of the shops owned by foreigners corresponds by and large to the area where the foreign population lives, the various situations present subtle differences. The development of foreign trade is due mostly to the fact that it is in the hands of people who already have a long standing commercial tradition in their native countries and also to the fact that their communities are able to finance them from their own pockets. Even though some types of businesses remain very prominent a diversification in foreign trade in currently occuring and that in itself is proof of its great capacity to adapt to the evolution of the French distribution system.