India, France Sign Strategic Pact on Use of Each Other's Military Bases

Prime Minister Modi emphasised that India and France were not the only leaders of two strong independent countries and two diverse democracies, but the successors of rich and capable heritage.

Stepping up cooperation in the Indian Ocean region will be one of the top issues that will be discussed by Macron and Prime Minister Modi during delegation-level talks tomorrow.

Modi, who spoke before President Macron, said "In defence, we welcome investments in Make in India from France". The Congress has been demanding details of the deal, alleging that the deal negotiated under its rule was much cheaper than the contract signed by the Modi government.

Reflecting a growing depth in defence ties, India and France today inked a strategic pact providing for the use of each other's military facilities including opening naval bases to warships, an agreement that comes amid China's growing military expansionism in the Indo-Pacific region. During his visit to Varanasi on Monday, he will inaugurate a 75 MW solar plant built by French firm Engie Solar in Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh.

Speaking to media after being accorded a ceremonial reception at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, Macron said he has three purposes for this visit.

A technical agreement was also signed on the French-assisted nuclear power project at Jaitapur in western Maharashtra state.

India and France space cooperation is more than five- decades-old. Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Randeep Surjewala said while 36 Rafale jets were sold to India at 7.5 billion Euros in 2016, 48 jets were sold to Qatar and Egypt at 7.9 billion Euros in 2015.

Macron and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi - addressing a news conference in New Delhi after signing the agreements - also committed to strengthening their partnership on defence andsecurity.

After his arrival in India, Macron also talked about his personal relations with Indian PM Modi.

On Sunday, Modi and Macron will co-chair the founding conference of the International Solar Alliance (ISA). Your visit will add great strength to the strategic partnership between India and France.

The $9.3 billion (Dh34bn) framework agreement for six nuclear reactors was signed during a visit to India in 2010 by then president Nicolas Sarkozy.

  • Angelo Rivera