French Ambassador Emmanuel Lenain has said his country wants to be a partner in the process of building a national industrial base for defence industries in India.
Talking to reporters on Saturday on board French aircraft carrier Charles De Gaulle which took part in the Indo-French naval exercise ‘Varuna’ off the Goa coast, Lenain said the two countries can co-produce lot of equipment for the defence and space sectors.
France is committed to making available the best technologies to Indian forces without restrictions, he said. Lenain said France has really understood the vision of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ (self-reliant India).
“We understand that also because we are a highly independent country and we have been through that process also. We want to be a partner in the process to build a national industrial base for defence industries in India,” he said.
The envoy said that when India is looking to diversify its suppliers, France is a great option. Lenain said his country is committed to making available the best technologies to Indian forces without restrictions. “France will not only support for make in India, but also come forward to co-develop and co-produce equipment,” he said.
Asked about relations between the two countries, Lenain said “The bilateral ties between India and France are exceptionally good and trustworthy.” “We are of the same values. The best way to assert our strategic autonomy is by cooperating together. The two countries can co-produce lot of equipment for the defence and space sectors,” Lenain said.
The Indo-French naval exercise that began here on January 16 culminated on Friday.
A French Navy official earlier said this joint preparation for air-sea warfare exemplifies the outstanding Indo-French naval cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, with ships, frigates and helicopters as well as a French command and replenishment ship carrying out numerous training sessions of increasing intensity, the official informed.
The aim of the joint exercise was to prepare the crews of the two countries to face a variety of challenges together, mobilising their anti-surface, anti-submarine and anti-aircraft assets, as well as shared control of the air-sea environment and ship control, the official said