Consul General and trade commissioner of France Francois Pujolas on Wednesday said the economic recession was not going to hamper the ties between India and France in any field and France is planning to invest 10 billion Euros in different fields in India in next five to ten years.
“The French government is also planning to increase the number of Indian students coming to France for higher education by at least three times in next two to three years with special focus on students of Pune,” he said.
Pujolas was talking to the media persons on the sidelines of the French Festival arranged by the French Embassy in India and Vishwakarma Institute of Technology (VIT).
Recession is not going to hamper the bilateral ties and France will continue to invest in India as per the commitments, he said. Pujolas said that France and India shared good political and economic relations and France was keen on improving them. The bilateral economic ties between the two countries is worth 6 billion Euros and the France government is planning to double it by 2012, he said.
Presently,we have 450 French companies that have invested in India. We are definitely planning to increase it, said Pujolas. He also said that Pune too features prominently priority wise for investments,as it has developed as a major economic hub in India.
We will also be looking at a large chunk of students from Pune to come to France for higher education as Pune is well known in the academic circles of France due to quality students the educational institutes produce and its reputation as the fastest growing city in India, he said.
At present there are 1500 Indian students in France and we are trying to raise it by at least three times, he added.
Bharat Agarwal,managing trustee of Bansilal Ramnath Charitable Trust that runs VIT said the institute was looking for more bilateral academic relations with the French institutes. Already six students from VIT have been flown to France for post doctoral research and we are trying to increase the number. The festivals like this will help achieving the goal, he said.
Agarwal also said that VIT was not only looking at international but inter-country tie-ups also.
We will pass on the benefits we gain from international tie-ups to the domestic institutes, he said.
Meanwhile,the festival showcased an exhibition on education in France. It also had academic sessions by Campus France Desk,n+I consortium and Alliance Francaise de Poona. Students of VIT and some of the engineering institutes in the city attended the festival.
Director of VIT Hemant Abhyankar,Alliance Francaise de Poona director Jean Jacques Scaerou and n+i coordinator Revati Arole guided the students on various subjects.