New Delhi: French President Emmanuel Macron will hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday. He arrived in India on Friday along with his wife Brigitte Marie-Claude Macron, besides senior ministers from his Cabinet.
Warm welcome to President of France, @EmmanuelMacron and Mrs. Brigitte Macron on their first State visit to India. Deviating from protocol, PM @narendramodi received President Macron at the airport. pic.twitter.com/fkddtYfHlB
— Raveesh Kumar (@MEAIndia) March 9, 2018
During the visit, the two countries would look to boost ties, especially in the areas of maritime security and counter-terrorism.
An agreement on the Jaitapur nuclear power plant, which is being built with French assistance, is expected to be signed during the visit, PTI quoted sources as saying.
Stepping up cooperation in the Indian Ocean region will be one of the top issues that will be discussed by Macron and PM Modi during delegation-level talks on Saturday.
"France has particularly supported India's perspective on terror in South Asia. We are seeing convergence in new areas, particularly maritime security, counter-terrorism and renewable energy," K Nagraj Naidu, joint secretary (Europe-west), told reporters.
Besides defence, cooperation in the areas of nuclear energy and space are the other pillars of the strategic partnership between India and France.
"In the area of space, India and France have a matured engagement and we would like to take it to a new level," Naidu said.
The Indo-French cooperation in the area of space is more than five-decades-old.
Besides conventional areas, thrust would also be on renewable energy, high-speed train and stepping cooperation in trade.
(With PTI inputs)