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Defence Dialogue: India France discuss co-production opportunities

Defence Dialogue: India France discuss co-production opportunities

New Delhi, Nov 28 (UNI) India and France on Monday discussed ways to bolster defence industrial cooperation and potential co-production opportunities during the 4th Annual Defence Dialogue between the two countries here.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh co-chaired the Annual Defence Dialogue with his French counterpart Sebastien Lecornu here.
"Had warm and fruitful discussions with the Defence Minister of France, Mr Sebastien Lecornu during the fourth India-France Annual Defence Dialogue in New Delhi today. A wide range of bilateral, regional and defence industrial cooperation issues were discussed during the dialogue," Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in a tweet.
The meeting was held in a very cordial atmosphere, the Ministers reviewed the ongoing military-to-military cooperation which has increased substantially in the recent years, the Defence Ministry said.
They discussed means to strengthen maritime cooperation and increase the scope and complexity of bilateral exercises.
They noted with satisfaction that India and France recently held their bilateral Air Exercise ‘Garuda’ at Air Force Station, Jodhpur successfully.
During the dialogue, one of the key areas of discussion was defence industrial cooperation with a focus on ‘Make in India’. Future collaborations and potential co-production opportunities were discussed, the Defence Ministry added.
The Ministers agreed that the technical groups from both the countries should meet early next year and take the key cooperation issues forward.
The Ministers recognised their convergences on number of strategic and defence issues and shared the commitment to work together on enhancing cooperation in bilateral, regional and multilateral fora, with a focus on the Indo-Pacific region, the Defence Ministry added.
"France is an old, faithful and reliable partner of India. Our cooperation is rich and multiple. This 4th defense dialogue between our two countries, which I chaired with Rajnath Singh, showed the convergence of our responses to common challenges in the Indo-Pacific," the French Minister Sebastien Lecornu said in a tweet.
France is the current chair of Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) and Indian Scan Naval Symposium (IONS) and both countries cooperate closely in these fora.
The visiting French Minister also met External Affair Minister Dr S. Jaishankar and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval later in the day.
"Welcomed French Minister of Armed Forces Sebastien Lecornu to MEA this evening. A wide ranging discussion on contemporary strategic developments," Estemal Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar wrote on Twitter.
As part of his visit to India, Lecornu yesterday made a day-long trip to Headquarters, Southern Naval Command and visited India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant.
The French Minister of Armed Forces stated that he was highly impressed with INS Vikrant.
France is one of India's most trusted strategic partners and both countries look forward to celebrating 25 years of their strategic partnership in 2023.
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