Paris: Commencing his Europe tour Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in Paris on Thursday evening. This is his first visit to Europe after taking oath as the Prime Minister.
The Indian PM was received by Thierry Braillart, minister of state for sports of France.During his four-day stay, Modi will hold talks with French President Francois Hollande and meet business leaders. His tour will focus on boosting trade and economic ties, including in defence and railways.
During his four-day stay, Modi will hold talks with Hollande and meet business leaders. The focus of the talks will be civil nuclear, defence and trade.
A highlight of his stay in France will be a boat ride with Hollande, which is being described as ‘naav pe charcha’ (chat on boat). Earlier, Modi has had ‘chai pe charcha’ (chat over tea) with foreign leaders, including President Barack Obama during his visit to New Delhi in January.
In France, the Prime Minister will also visit the World War-I memorial and pay tributes to about 10,000 Indians who lost their lives while fighting alongside France.
He will also visit UNESCO headquarters, Airbus facility and French space agency office.
India is hoping that French companies will participate in the ‘Make in India’ programme initiated by Modi.
After wrapping up the first leg of his tour, Modi will head to Germany, where business and technology will be the focus his engagements aimed at attracting participant in the make in India programme.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to sign a major defence deal with France in order to boost India’s military capabilities and infrastructure. A new deal to buy 60 Rafale fighter jets is likely to be announced in a joint press conference by Modi and French President Francois Hollande in Paris on Friday.
Three squadrons of about 60 jets are to be bought in a new contract between the Government of India and Government of France. The deal is worth over $4 billion and it overrides the MMRCA process in which Dasault Rafale was lowest bidder for 126 aircraft. The final signing of the MMRCA deal is yet to take place as India and France have some differences over the final amount.