Defence And Aerospace: The Indo-French Bond

The multi-tier industry delegation from France and the wide range of Indian participants reflect the drive for Make in India

Marking the 20th anniversary of the strategic partnership between India and France, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron had a summit meeting in New Delhi in March 2018. Fourteen agreements were signed, including those related to strategic maritime awareness, logistical support between armed forces, and exchange of classified information.

Following up, an industrial delegation of 80-plus members of GIFAS, the French aerospace industries association, will be visiting India from 16-19 April. Besides prime contractors, the delegation has both system suppliers and small specialist companies representing both commercial and military segments to include aircraft, helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), engines, missiles, spacecraft and launch vehicles. Hosted by the Society of Indian Defence Manufacturers, the delegates from India and France will be addressed in New Delhi by defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman, minister of state for defence Subhash R. Bhamre and minister of state for civil aviation Jayant Sinha. There will be roundtables of policymakers and industry on specific themes: defence, civil aviation and space. This will set the stage for industry visits to Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Mumbai.

France is a major source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in India, with about 750 big French companies, with a cumulative investment of $5.82 billion between April 2000 and June 2017. Over 150 Indian companies are operating in France, employing around 7,000 people. 

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