Raksha Mantri Asks French Defence Industry to Make India Their Production Base and Benefit from its Vast Market as Well as Export Potential
(Source: Indian Ministry of Defence; issued Oct 09, 2019)
Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh said India and France intend to explore ways to strengthen their defence industrial partnership. Addressing the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of French Defence Industries in Paris today, Shri Rajnath Singh called upon the French companies for collaboration to modernise India’s shipyards and defence platforms by infusion of technology and asked them to make India its base for production of defence equipment not only for India’s large market but also for export to other countries.

“We have undertaken significant economic reforms to improve the ease of doing business and opening up the economy for investments. Our Government under the leadership of our Prime Minister Modi has opened up defence sector manufacturing to a large extent under the ‘Make in India’ initiative”, he said.

Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh underlined the significance of implementation of a single Goods and Services Tax across India, the biggest tax reform since its independence. “We have recently reduced our corporate tax significantly. For ‘Make in India’ in Defence if there is need for further tax rationalisation, it may be considered suitably”, Shri Singh said.

Raksha Mantri applauded the French companies for regularly participating in DefExpos organised in India with great energy and enthusiasm. He extended a special invitation to French firms to participate in DefExpo, which will be held in Lucknow from February 05 to 08, 2020. “Lucknow happens to be a city of rich culture and heritage and the French people are known to be highly appreciative of great cultures. Lucknow is the capital of Uttar Pradesh which is also a land of new opportunities”, he added.

Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh highlighted India’s substantial requirement of Aero engines both in civil and military domains. He requested French OEMs to consider exploring development of an Aero engine complex on government -to- government basis saying French companies could leverage from advantages in India such as low wages and availability of technical manpower.

India’s Ambassador to France Shri Vinay Kwatra gave the welcome address. Additional Secretary, Ministry of Defence Shri Barun Mitra also gave a presentation on DefExpo 2020. Dr Ajay Kumar, Defence Secretary also addressed the CEOs.

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Rajnath Singh Holds Second Annual Defence Dialogue with French Counterpart; both sides agree to strengthen and deepen defence relations
(Source: Indian Ministry of Defence; issued Oct 09, 2019)
Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh, who is currently on a visit to France, held the Second India-France Ministerial level Annual Defence Dialogue with his French counterpart, the Minister for the Armed Forces Ms. Florence Parly on October 8th in Paris.

During the Annual Defence Dialogue held in Paris, the two Ministers comprehensively reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral defence cooperation, which is a key pillar of India-France Strategic Partnership. They also exchanged views on contemporary regional and international developments of mutual interest.

Both sides discussed ways to further deepen defence-related official as well as operational level interactions. The two nations agreed to expand the scope and complexity of the existing regular bilateral joint exercises (SHAKTI, VARUNA and GARUDA).

Recognising that India-France partnership in the Indian Ocean Region is crucial for preserving and promoting the common strategic and security interests, the two Ministers noted the continuing implementation of actions outlined in the “Joint Strategic Vision of India-France Cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region” (March 2018). The Ministers also reaffirmed the strong intention of the two sides to further deepen bilateral cooperation on counter terrorism.

Shri Rajnath Singh on October 07 attended a ceremony for the Handing over of the first of the 36 Rafale aircraft being acquired by India from France.

The Indian delegation included Defence Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar, senior officials from the Ministry of Defence and the three Services.

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