The AFP has a staff of 2,260 people located in five regional offices from which it covers the news from 150 countries. The AFP is the oldest news gathering organization in the world. The history of the AFP dates to 1835. It is also the world's third largest news gathering organization.

Unofficially, the AFP is under the control of the French government. The newsletter of the AFP is regularly delivered in French, English, Arabic, Spanish, German and Portuguese.