India, France Sign 14 Pacts, Set To Widen Defence, Security Ties

  • India, France Sign 14 Pacts, Set To Widen Defence, Security Ties

India, France Sign 14 Pacts, Set To Widen Defence, Security Ties

The embassy listed several other agreements, ranging from investment in cement in the southern Indian states of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka by France's Vicat Cement to a contract between industrial gas firm Air Liquide and India's Sterlite.

"The strategic partnership between India and France, established in 1998, is one of the most important and comprehensive bilateral engagements and is marked by intense and frequent high-level exchanges and deep political understanding", it added.

Macron, who arrived in New Delhi on Friday for a four-day visit to India, said France and India should be key partners. "PM Narendra Modi welcomes President of France Emmanuel Macron at the Hyderabad House in New Delhi ahead of the bilateral talks", MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted along with pictures of the two leaders.

He said both countries strategic partnership may be just 20 years old, but our cultural and spiritual partership is even older.

The two sides inked the pact amid Chinas growing assertiveness in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific region.

Modi said the two countries were releasing a Joint Strategic Vision for cooperation in the Indian Ocean region in what can be seen as a strong China given Beijing's increasing influence in the region.

In addition, 13 more agreements - including one on "Industrial Way Forward" between Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited and EDF, France, to pave way for the implementation of the long-delayed Jaitapur nuclear power project - were signed.

Both sides also decided that both countries will strengthen the coordination in existing global and regional bodies to carry out this objective.

He even added that India and France have chose to work together to deal with threats of terrorism and radicalisation. This apart, the two sides released a joint vision for space cooperation, and a joint strategic vision in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).

Giving a boost to their strategic partnership, India and France on Saturday vowed to strengthen defence and energy ties with each other. The alliance, launched during the Paris Climate Summit in 2015, is a coalition of the 121-member countries, which work for efficient exploitation of solar energy to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.

Both India and France stressed the positive contribution of the "One Plant Summit" in Paris on December 12 previous year to this objective.

The Congress, which accuses the Narendra Modi government of agreeing to a much higher price than the UPA government's negotiated price of Rs 526.1 crore per jet, had on Friday cited figures from the annual report of Rafale's French manufacturer, Dassault Aviation, to support its claim.