French first-helf online retail sales rose 13 pct

PARIS, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Online retail sales in France rose 13 percent to 35 billion euros ($39.31 billion) in the first half, driven by a growing number of transactions on smartphones and the rise of web-based marketplaces, the French E-Commerce Federation (Fevad) said on Monday.

The robust showing made Fevad confident of reaching a target for 2016 online retail sales of 70 billion euros.

In the second quarter alone, online sales rose 15 percent to 17.4 billion euros as a 21 percent jump in the number of transactions offset a 5 percent decline in average basket value to 75.5 euros.

In spite of a still weak economy, volumes generated on web marketplaces, which allow third-party merchants to sell their goods, rose 16 percent during the second quarter. Sales made using tablets and smartphones rose 38 percent.

The number of e-commerce websites reached 190,000 at the end of June, up 13 percent year-on-year. They should exceed 200,000 during the third quarter.

Three of the most visited e-commerce websites in France are Amazon, CDiscount, owned by French retailer Casino , and book and CD retail chain Fnac.

France ranks as the sixth biggest e-commerce market worldwide. In Europe, only Germany and the United Kingdom are bigger.

$1 = 0.8905 euros Reporting by Pascale Denis, Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Brian Love