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20th edition of India-France Joint Staff talks: India, France agree to boost defence ties

The India-France Joint Staff talks has been established to enhance defence cooperation between the two countries through regular talks

The 20th edition of India-France Joint Staff talks focused on new initiatives in defence cooperation, the government said on Thursday.

The two-day talks concluded in Paris on Wednesday.

“The meeting was conducted in a friendly, warm and cordial atmosphere. The discussions focused on new initiatives under the ambit of existing bilateral defence cooperation mechanism and strengthening ongoing defence engagements,” the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

The India-France Joint Staff talks has been established to enhance defence cooperation between the two countries through regular talks at the strategic and operational levels.

The two-day meet was co-chaired by Assistant Chief of Integrated Staff, Int-C (Military Cooperation), Headquarters, Integrated Defence Staff (HQ IDS) Air Vice Marshal B Manikantan and Head of Bilateral Cooperation South/Staff HQ Brigadier General Eric Peltier.

It came close on the heels of India and France inking a roadmap to enhance bilateral exchanges on the blue economy during Foreign Minister S Jaishankar’s visit to France in February.

The roadmap aims to forge a common vision of ocean governance based on the rule of law and to cooperate on sustainable and resilient coastal and waterways infrastructure.

“India and France intend to make the blue economy a driver of progress of their respective societies while respecting the environment and coastal and marine biodiversity. Both countries aim to contribute to scientific knowledge and ocean conservation and ensure that the ocean remains a global common, a space of freedom and trade, based on the rule of law,” the External Affairs Ministry had said in view of Jaishankar’s visit.

“India and France nurture a high-quality dialogue on maritime security, which enables them to raise strategic issues in the Indo-Pacific. This partnership marks a significant step-forward in India-France cooperation for maritime security,” the ministry had added.

The scope of the roadmap will encompass maritime trade, the naval industry, fisheries, marine technology and scientific research, ocean observation, marine biodiversity, marine ecosystem-based management and integrated coastal management, marine eco-tourism, inland waterways, cooperation between competent administrations on civil maritime issues, marine spatial planning as well as international law of the sea and related multilateral negotiations.

Source : INDIAN EXPRESS

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