India, France consent to enhance collaboration in Southwest Indian Ocean

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India and France Enhance Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Region

News comes from Reader Wall’s source that India and France recently pledged to increase collaborative efforts in the Southwest Indian Ocean. This decision builds on previous joint surveillance missions carried out from the French island territory of La Reunion during 2020 and 2022.

Expansion of Interactions in India’s Maritime Neighbourhood

Both nations have also celebrated the extension of their interactions within India’s maritime neighborhood, an initiative that could have far-reaching impacts on safeguarding strategic sea lanes of communication. This news comes in the wake of the joint statement shared during French President Emmanuel Macron’s recent visit to India for the Republic Day celebrations.

Furthering the Partnership

Prime Minister Modi of India and President Macron of France reiterated their commitment to intensify their long-standing relationship, founded on a mutual vision of the Indo-Pacific area.

The significance of this region for their respective national and strategic interests was emphasized during their meeting. Both leaders acknowledged their alliance’s critical role in promoting a free, open, inclusive, secure, and peaceful Indo-Pacific region and beyond.

Comprehensive Roadmap for the Indo-Pacific

Both leaders lauded the Comprehensive Roadmap for the Indo-Pacific, finalized in July 2023, as a testament to their growing engagement in the region.

According to the released joint statement, the defense and security collaboration is a crucial component of the India-France partnership in the Indo-Pacific region. This collaboration spans a gamut of bilateral, multinational, regional, and institutional initiatives, majorly focused on the Indian Ocean Region.

Revitalizing Trilateral Cooperation and Supporting Sustainable Development Projects

As per the joint statement, PM Modi and President Macron have committed to rejuvenate their trilateral cooperation with Australia, solidify their collaboration with the UAE, and investigate fresh opportunities in the region. They pointed out the necessity of collective and multilateral initiatives to support sustainable economic development, human welfare, environmental sustainability, robust infrastructure, innovation, and connectivity in the region, and encouraged their governments to identify concrete projects.

Coordinating Economic Projects

Both leaders acknowledged the efforts made by the French Development Agency in India and agreed to unearth opportunities for synchronizing economic projects and schemes in the Pacific.

Strategic Importance of the India-Middle East-Europe Corridor

The launch of the India-Middle East-Europe Corridor (IMEC) during the G20 Summit in Delhi in September 2023 was recognized as a milestone initiative promising to significantly enhance the potential and resilience of commerce and energy transmission between India, the Middle East, and Europe. PM Modi welcomed the appointment of President Macron’s Special Envoy for the project and both leaders agreed to explore specific projects further.

Call for Reformed and Effective Multilateralism

PM Modi and President Macron reiterated the need for a reformation and strengthening of multilateralism to maintain an equitable and peaceful international order, tackle global challenges, and ready the world for upcoming developments in technology and economics. In particular, they voiced the urgent demand for the reformation of the United Nations Security Council and motioned for the prompt commencement of text-based negotiations at the Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) in the UN.

Reform of Multilateral Development Banks

France reiterated its firm support for India’s permanent membership of the UNSC. Both leaders acknowledged the need for reformation of Multilateral Development Banks, emphasized during the G20 Summit in Delhi and the Paris Global Financing Summit, to make them more effective in dealing with issues of development and climate. They welcomed a report presented by an Independent Expert Group established under the Indian G20 Presidency that provided concrete suggestions in this regard.


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