French President Emmanuel Macron will attend India’s Republic Day as a chief guest on Friday. This visit is seen as a significant milestone in strengthening the strategic partnership between the two countries ahead of a multi-billion-dollar deal to buy French fighter jets and submarines for the Indian military.
On January 25, he will first visit Jaipur to see the Amber Fort and later meet PM Modi to take a tour of the pink city together.
According to reports, Macron’s visit will be more ceremonial than substantial, and he will meet many business leaders from the pharmaceutical, auto, space, energy, and hydrogen industries. India-France ties have been one of the oldest among European nations. Additionally, it has been India’s second-largest arms supplier, and India has been relying on French fighter jets for more than 40 years now.
PM Modi’s last visit to France was for the Bastille Day celebration in July. During his visit, the Indian government first authorised the acquisition of 26 Rafale aircraft, and the two countries collaborated to build three 800 billion rupee Scorpene-class submarines.
However, the deal was not finalised then. France further looks forward to enhancing cooperation in the space and nuclear sectors.