Sarkozy said 600 windmills will constructed in five sites, at Saint-Nazaire, le Trépot, Fécamp, Courseulles-sur-Mer and Saint-Brieuc (see map). The turbines should be operational between now and 2015. The winning bids will be announced in 2012.
The French government is unblocking 100 million euros to help develop a French network of wind power. The project will create 10,000 jobs, according to Sarkozy.
The government has pledged that France will be running on 23 per cent renewable energy by 2020.
France has plans to produce 25,000 megawatts from wind turbines, of which 6,000 megawatts will come from turbines in the sea.
The UK, which leads Europe in the field, produces 1,341 megawatts offshore at the moment.