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Paris region is the wealthiest and most populated of the 27 regions in France. It is mainly made up of the metropolitan area of Paris, and is still referred to by many residents as the region Parisienne (the Paris region). With its 11.7 million inhabitants it is not only the most populated region in France but is also more populated than Austria, Belgium, Finland, Greece, Portugal and Sweden. It is Europe’s largest and wealthiest regional economy.
The Department of the Region of Paris was created in 1959 but proved unsuccessful as the area’s communes and departments refused to cooperate and would not send representatives to the district council. In 1976 the region was renamed "Ile de France" and brought into line with the other French regions, which had been created in 1972. The region is made up of eight departments which are centred around the city of Paris.