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Enhanced Defence Collaboration Between India and France



  Jan 29, 2024

Enhanced Defence Collaboration Between India and France




Introduction:

India and France have significantly advanced their defence collaboration, marking a new era in bilateral ties. This strategic partnership was strengthened during French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to India as the Chief Guest for the Republic Day celebrations in Jaipur.

Defence Industrial Roadmap:

A major outcome of this visit was the adoption of a Defence Industrial Roadmap. This agreement focuses on the ‘co-design, co-development, and co-production’ of military equipment, aiming to not only meet the defence needs of India but also to provide reliable defence supplies to other friendly nations.

Key Agreements and Projects:

Maintenance and Overhaul Facilities: The establishment of Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facilities for LEAP engines by Safran, with plans to expand to Rafale engines. Helicopter and Submarine Production: A comprehensive partnership involving a joint venture for IMRH engine between Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) and Safran, and the ongoing production and indigenization of Scorpene submarines in India.

Development of Advanced Fighter Jet Engine - Shakti:

Collaborative Effort: The project aims to develop the Shakti engine to power HAL’s Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), with ongoing discussions between Safran, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), and other Indian agencies.

Naval Aviation Expansion:

Rafale Marine Jets: India is in talks with France to procure Rafale Marine jets for the Indian Navy’s aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, with recent bids received for Rafale-M jets and Scorpene submarines.

Private Sector Involvement:

Airbus-Tata Partnership: A significant development is the decision of Airbus and Tata Advanced System to begin assembling civilian helicopters in India, marking the entry of private sector companies in helicopter manufacturing in the country.

Broader Strategic Cooperation:

Space and Cybersecurity Collaboration: The partnership extends to space cooperation, with agreements between NSIL and Arianespace, and discussions on deeper collaboration in resilient cyber infrastructure and Artificial Intelligence.

International Peace and Security:

Response to Israel-Hamas Conflict: Both leaders condemned the terrorist attack on Israel and emphasized the need for respect of international humanitarian law, calling for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza and the release of all hostages.

Vision for Lasting Peace:

Two-State Solution: The discussions also touched upon the need for a ‘two-state solution’ for lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, expressing concern over the conflict’s potential expansion.
This comprehensive partnership between India and France represents a significant step towards strengthening their strategic alliance, with implications for global peace and security.


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