Wednesday, Sep 17, 2014

Rafale aircraft: France calls for expediting deal and hopes for a positive outcome from India

RAFALE-480 French Rafale aircraft. (Source: Express Archive)
Express News Service | New Delhi | Posted: July 1, 2014 12:59 am | Updated: July 1, 2014 8:18 am

In his first visit to reach out to the Narendra Modi government, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius Monday pressed for sealing the multi-billion dollar Rafale combat aircraft deal during his meetings with Defence Minister Arun Jaitley and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

France hopes that with the new government, whose focus was was on efficiency, the implementation of the decision will be swift and expressed confidence of a “positive outcome” to the ongoing negotiations in the deal, Fabius said. He said Rafale meets all requirements of India, including cutting-edge technology and highest quality.

Fabius announced France’s decision to have a new visa regime for Indian travellers from January 2015 under which they will get visa in 48 hours. This is aimed at increasing human exchange, the minister said.

On civil nuclear cooperation, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said, “Civil nuclear cooperation is a pillar of our bilateral strategic partnership and this was discussed. Both sides reiterated their commitment to proceeding with the Jaitapur nuke plant.”

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