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India-France Economic and Commercial Relations

1. France is the 5th largest economy of the world with a total GDP of € 2.1 trillion in 2016 with a GDP growth rate of 1.1% in 2016. It had a Per Capita GDP (PPP) of € 31,800 in 2016. France is an important member of the G-8, OECD and G-20. Its technological strengths make it the leader in sectors such as aviation, space, food processing, transport, railways and agricultural research. However, France's business interaction with India is not commensurate with its intrinsic economic capacity.

2. The economic and commercial linkages are an important component of India's bilateral relations with France. The economic reforms process in India, ten Prime Ministerial visits from India to France (in 1992, 1995, 1998, 2003, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2015 & 2017), the visit of our President to France (in 2000), visit of the French Prime Minister to India (in 2003), the visits of the French President to India (in 1998, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2013 & 2016) and the growing French interest in establishing their presence in Asian markets including in India have all contributed to a broadening of economic links. The series of high-level visits in the commercial and economic field reflects the growing interest of both the governments in expanding trade between the two countries. France considers India an important market for its products and is looking to increase the number of joint ventures and encouraging investments in and from India.

3. The global trade of France decreased by 0.67 in 2016 with French exports decreasing by 0.94 and French imports falling by 0.44 over 2015 figures. There was a decline in exports of iron & steel, aircraft & spacecraft, electrical machinery & equipment and plastics and articles thereof while all other top ten category products registered an increase in exports: automobiles, cosmetics, nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances, pharmaceuticals and medical & surgical instruments. French imports also decreased by 0.44 in 2016. There was a decline in imports of mineral fuels, mineral oils & products, organic chemicals and aircraft & spacecraft while all other top ten category products registered an increase in imports such as vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock, aircraft & spacecraft, optical/photographic/measuring instruments, nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances, electrical machinery & equipment and articles of apparel & clothing accessories. The trade deficit during the last 12 months (from April 2016 to March 2017) stood at € 55.6 billion against € 48.4 billion for the previous year. France’s trade with other leading partners decreased by -0.67% last year with bilateral trade with the USA increasing by 1.33% and that with China decreasing by 2.73%. Germany was France’s largest partner in 2016 accounting for 16.52% of French trade, followed by USA and China. France-China trade accounted for 7.21% of France’s total foreign trade.

4. Bilateral Trade in Goods (Jan. to Dec. 2016)

India’s main exports to France include: textile & textile articles (21.49% share); nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances (7.65%); electrical machinery & equipment (6%); organic chemicals (5.96); vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock (5.64%); footwear (5.22%), mineral fuels & oils (4.84%); leather articles (3.95%) and gems & jewellery (3.69).

Top French exports to India include: aircraft & spacecraft (28.12%); electrical machinery & equipment (16.02%); nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances (13.32%); optical, photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical or surgical instruments and apparatus; parts and accessories thereof (6.98%); organic chemicals (3.87%); iron & steel (3.64%); plastics & articles thereof (3.16%); pharmaceuticals (3.07%); articles of iron & steel (2.35%) and miscellaneous chemical products (2.24%).

In 2016, the total trade in goods between France and India was worth € 8.58 billion, registering an increase of 0.49% from 2015. India’s exports to France were valued at € 4.67 billion (-12.87%) whereas French exports to India totalled € 3.90 billion (+23.06%).

Of top ten products exported by India to France, only the exports of the following three products have registered an increase: vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock (+ 14.11%); gems & jewellery (+ 10.68%) and articles of apparel & clothing accessories, not knitted or crocheted (+ 4.46%). The other products have registered a decrease: mineral fuels & oils (- 74.93%); organic chemicals (- 5.07%); articles of apparel & clothing accessories, knitted or crocheted (- 3.62%); electrical machinery & equipment (- 3.19%); footwear (- 3.04%); nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances (- 2.62%) and articles of leather, saddlery & harness (- 0.81%).

French exports to India increased by 23.06% in 2016. Exports of following top 10 ranked products increased: aircraft & spacecraft (+ 109.03%); pharmaceutical products (+ 38.91%); iron & steel (+ 28.23%); nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances (+ 13.80%); electrical machinery & equipment (+ 11.66%); articles of iron & steel (+ 10.58%) and plastics & articles thereof (+ 9.46%). However, exports of miscellaneous chemical products fell by - 17.21%, optical, photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical or surgical instruments & apparatus by - 14.17% and organic chemicals by - 7.60%.

The trade surplus which is in favour of India for the past 10 years stood at € 0.75 billion in 2016 from € 2.19 billion in 2015. India had a 0.91% share in French imports in 2016 while French exports to India represented 0.88% of total French exports.


India-France Goods Trade in the last 10 years (in Million €)

Year

Indian Exports to France

French Exports to India

Total Trade

Balance of

Trade for India

% Change (YoY) in total trade

2006

2,499

2,635

5,134

(-) 136

+30.07%

2007

2,784

3,351

6,135

(-) 567

+19.49%

2008

3,461

3,327

6,787

(+) 131

+10.62%

2009

2,911

2,460

5,371

(+) 447

-20.86%

2010

4,130

2,900

7,030

(+) 1227

+30.83%

2011

4,696

2,769

7,465

(+) 1927

+6.23%

2012

4,656

3,256

7,912

(+) 1400

+5.98%

2013

4,440

2,713

7,153

(+) 1,727

-9.59%

2014

5,216

2,704

7,920

(+)  2,502

+10.7%

2015

5,218

2,703

8,548

(+) 2196

+7.91%

2016

4,669

3,910

8,580

(+) 759

+0.37%

Source: French Ministry of Economy, Finance & Industry (Data rounded off to nearest million €).

Trends in 2017

Trade

In Jan.-Feb. 2017, India France bilateral trade stood at € 1.66 billion (+38.01%) as compared to the corresponding period the previous year. Indian exports to France increased by 13.74% during this period with a fall in exports of following top 10 category products: knitted or crocheted articles of apparel & clothing accessories (-10.77%), not knitted or crocheted articles of apparel & clothing accessories (-4.67%), footwear (-2.56%) & articles of leather (-3.52%). There was however an increase in exports of automobiles and parts (61.48%) and gems and jewellery (10.27%), electrical machinery (24.69%), organic chemicals (18.97%), nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery and mechanical appliances (19.33%) & mineral fuels & oils (285.33%).

Meanwhile, French exports to India increased by 87.93% during the same period. Exports of following top 10 ranked products increased: aircraft & spacecraft (2261.88%); electrical machinery & equipment (9.67%); nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances (119.7%); iron & steel (38.22%); pharmaceutical products (124.32%); miscellaneous chemical products (35.45%); essential oils (21.4%) & plastics and articles thereof (6.11%). However, exports of organic chemicals fell by 35.4%, and those of optical, photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical or surgical instruments and apparatus & parts thereof by -25.92%.

Top 10 Indian Exports to France for Jan.-Feb. 2017

   

Top 10 Indian Exports to France

Jan.-Feb. 2016

Jan.-Feb. 2017

Jan.-Feb. 2017

Jan.-Feb. 16 /Jan.-Feb. 2017

Jan.-Feb. 2017

S. N°

HS2

Commodity

Million €

Million €

Million US$

% Growth

% Share

1.

62

Articles of apparel and clothing accessories, not knitted or crocheted

101,94

97,18

103,01

-4,67

10,56

2.

27

Mineral fuels, mineral oils & products of their distillation; bituminous substances; mineral waxes

24,51

94,44

100,11

285,33

10,26

3.

61

Articles of apparel and clothing accessories knitted or crocheted

85,64

76,42

81

-10,77

8,30

4.

84

Nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery & mechanical appliances; parts thereof

54,68

65,25

69,16

19,33

7,09

5.

29

Organic chemicals

60,02

64,49

68,36

7,45

7,01

6.

85

Electrical machinery & equipment and parts thereof; sound recorders & reproducers, television image and sound recorders and reproducers, and parts and accessories of such articles

45,85

54,55

57,82

18,97

5,93

7.

87

Vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock, and parts and accessories thereof

33,08

53,41

56,62

61,48

5,80

8.

64

Footwear, gaiters & the like; parts of such articles

49,94

48,67

51,59

-2,56

5,29

9.

42

Articles of leather; saddlery & harness; travel goods, handbags and similar containers; articles of animal gut (other than silk-worm gut)

37,31

35,99

38,15

-3,52

3,91

10.

71

Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones, precious metals, metals clad with precious metal & articles thereof; imitation jewellery; coin

25,70

28,34

30,04

10,27

3,08

   

Total of French Imports from India

809,30

920,51

975,74

13,74

100

Source: French Customs

5. Bilateral Trade in Services

Based on annual data provided by the French Central Bank (Banque de France), bilateral trade in services has shown a growth from 2011-2014, reaching € 3.68 billion in 2014, but has decreased by 7.33% in 2015 to € 3.41 billion and has again gone down by 7.91 last year to € 3.14 billion. Total Indian exports in the services sector stood at € 1.70 billion in 2016. Exports of French services to India stood at € 1.43 billion during last year. The major areas for trade in services include: other services to businesses; telecommunication, computer & information services; transport and travel.

India-France Trade in Services over the last 5 Years (in Million €)

Year

(Jan. To Dec.)

Indian Exports to France

French Exports to India

Total

%age of increase/decrease

2012

1,405

1,236

2,641

+32.58

2013

1,635

1,287

2,922

+10.63

2014

2,149

1,531

3,680

+25.94

2015

1,715

1,695

3,410

-7.33

2016

1,706

1,434

3,140

-7.91

Composition of India-France Trade in Services in 2016 (in Million €)

 

Major Categories of Services

Indian Exports to France

Indian Imports from France

1.

Manufacturing services supplied by physical inputs held by third parties

70

61

2.

Maintenance & repair services

3

115

3.

Transport

306

459

4.

Travel

240

210

5.

Building & public works

2

0

6.

Pension & insurance services

12

19

7.

Financial services

29

24

8.

Commission for use of intellectual property

15

99

9.

Telecommunication, computer & information services

355

178

10.

Other services to businesses

669

267

11.

Cultural, leisure & personal services

25

2

12.

Goods & services of public administration

0

0

13.

Other services (not included elsewhere)

0

0

 

Total

1,706

1,434

6. French Investments in India

France has emerged as a major source of FDI for India with about 750 big French companies already present in India. France is the 9th largest foreign investor in India with a cumulative investment of US$ 5.72 billion from April 2000 to March 2017 which represents 1.72% of the total FDI inflows into India according to statistics provided by the DIPP. The highest FDI equity inflows are in the services sector (19.74%), with cement & gypsum products (16.75%) in second place, followed by drugs & pharmaceuticals (5.70%), food processing industries (5.48%) and industrial machinery (5.35%).

Most big French groups have their subsidiaries in India. However, there are a few joint ventures and liaison offices of French companies in India. 39 of the 40 CAC 40 (French Stock Market Index) companies are present in India. Around 50-70 SMEs are also present in India essentially in the mechanical and pharma-chemical sectors. French companies are present in a wide range of sectors: services (BNP Paribas, Capgemini, Havas, Sodexo, etc.); pharmaceutical-chemical (Arkema, L’Oréal, Sanofi, Total, etc.); aerospace (Airbus, Dassault, Eurocopter, Safran, Thales, etc.); agro-food (Bongrain, Danone, Lactalis, Lesaffre, Pernod Ricard, etc.); electronics (Crouzet, Gemalto, Oberthur, Safran, STMicroelectronics, etc.); construction mechanics (Alstom, Cermex, Legris Group, Poclain, Sidel, etc.); electrical components (Hager, Legrand, Schneider Electric, etc.); automobile (Faurecia, Michelin, Plastic Omnium, Renault, Valeo, etc.).

French investments cleared during 2016 include amongst others proposals from Decathlon (sports products & equipment), DCNS (defence related services), BNP Paribas (financial services), Safran (helicopter engines), Solairedirect (solar power), Bolloré Africa Logistics (container terminal), Geodis International (cargo handling) & Louis Dreyfus Armateurs (cargo handling).

[According to the estimates from the French Embassy in India, French companies employ almost 300,000 persons in India and have a turnover of more than US$ 20 billion and have a minimum stock investment portfolio of US$ 19 billion].

FDI Equity Inflows from France

Financial Year

(April-March)

FDI Equity Inflows from France

Rs. in Crores

US$ Million

€  Million

% change YoY

2000-01

455

104

92

/

2001-02

488

108

95

+3.5

2002-03

533

111

98

+3.3

2003-04

176

38

33

-65.6

2004-05

536

117

104

+206.7

2005-06

82

18

16

-84.2

2006-07

527

117

103

+533.6

2007-08

582

145

128

+23.7

2008-09

2,098

466

412

+221.4

2009-10

1,436

302

267

-35.1

2010-11

3,348

734

649

+142.6

2011-12

3,110

662

586

-9.7

2012-13

3,487

646

571

-2.4

2013-14

1,841

305

270

-52.7

2014-15

3,881

634

587

+117.42

2015-16

3,937

598

544

+5.6

2016-17

4,112

614

574

+5.5

Cumulative Inflows (April 2000 to March 2017)

30,637

5,725

5,354

/

Source: DIPP

7. Indian Investments in France

According to the ‘Business France Annual Report 2016’, there are around 75 Indian companies operating in France (over 150 including sub-subsidiaries), employing more than 7,000 people. Eleven new investment decisions by Indian companies in France were recorded in 2016, creating or maintaining 171 jobs in France. Indian investments were often in high value-added activities, particularly R&D and engineering (36%), decision-making centres (27%) and business services (18%). Investments came in a variety of sectors, including software and IT services (18%), energy and recycling (18%), aerospace, naval and railway equipment (18%), and textiles and clothing (18%) sectors. Indian companies invested primarily in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region (27%), the Paris Region (27%) and the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté Region (18%).

India was the 30th largest foreign investor in France with cumulative FDI inflows amounting to € 188 million (as per 31st December, 2014 statistics provided by the French Central Bank). Indian Investments in France have been growing and it is estimated that the total stock of Indian investments in France is approximately € 1 billion. Indian investment in France has come in different sectors such as pharmaceuticals (Ranbaxy & Wockhardt), software and IT (Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys & Wipro), wine (Kingfisher), steel (Tata Steel, Electrosteel), plastics (Sintex Industries), railway wagons (Titagarh Wagons), aerospace (Cades, Axis Aerospace & Technologies), Auto Parts (Jyoti), Two-wheelers (Mahindra& Mahindra), Metal Forging (Bharat Forge). Sintex Industries, Tata Group, Mahindra & Mahindra, Mahajan Group and Motherson Sumi are the four largest Indian employers in France. The following Indian companies invested in France in 2016: Royal Enfield (the firm announced that it would be establishing its pan-European headquarters in the Paris Region, with the opening of a concept store in Levallois-Perret); Guesswork (the Indian startup won a one-year residency for 2016 in the Startup42 business incubator in the Parisian suburb of Kremlin-Bicêtre); Etosha (the Indian specialist in flavours, fragrances and essential oils established a subsidiary in Grasse (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region) that will create 10 jobs over the next three years) & Dymond Cleantech (the Indian startup was resident in the La Paillasse business incubator in the Paris Region where it had co-working space and access to coaching sessions).

According to statistics released by Business France, in 2016 there was a 16% increase in jobs generated by foreign investments: France attracted 1,117 new job-creating foreign investment decisions last year that created or maintained 30,108 jobs in France (as compared to 33,682 in 2015). In 2016, 25% of all investments made by multinational firms in France were in production/manufacturing operations, accounting for 37% of all jobs generated by foreign investment. Foreign investments were received from 51 different countries in 2016, up from 47 in 2014: 62% of all foreign investment decisions were from Europe, followed by North America (20%) and Asia (12%), in very similar proportions to 2015.

The leading source countries of companies investing in France in 2016 were Germany (17% with 191 projects), the United States (16% with 182 projects), Italy (13% with 141 projects), the United Kingdom (8% with 85 projects) and Japan (6% with 67 projects). The number of investments from BRIC nations in France remained steady in 2016. With 73 investment decision, they collectively accounted for 7% of all inward investment in France. However, the structure of their business activities continues to change, with an increase in R&D operations amounting to 19% of all BRIC investments in France. Chinese and Indian investment represented 68% and 16% respectively, of all projects confirmed in 2016 by BRIC companies in France.

8. Issues related to Trade Protection/Rejection of Indian Goods, Sanitary and Phytosanitary/Technical Barriers and other Non-Tariff Barriers

France, being a member of the EU, these issues relate to EU bodies, however, some EU actions originate in France. In 2015, there were 6 cases of border rejections of Indian products by French authorities (compared to 12 in 2014). These related to mostly food-products on account of detection of banned substances or quantities above the minimum permissible levels being found during inspections.

9. Bilateral Mechanisms to promote Trade and Investments

India-France Joint Committee for Economic & Technical Cooperation (JCETC) was set up on 26th January 1976 through an exchange of letters between the Ministers of Commerce and Foreign Trade.   Meetings are held at Ministerial level alternately in Delhi and Paris.  This Joint Committee is the major institutional mechanism for cooperation in the economic and technical sector.  The 16th session of the Joint Committee was held on 23-25 June 2010 in Paris.  The entire gamut of bilateral economic and commercial relationship was reviewed at the meeting, and both sides agreed to continue and intensify cooperation.  No dates have been fixed for the next meeting of the Joint Committee.

Joint Working Groups (JWGs) at the senior official level have also been constituted through MoUs to deal with specific aspects of economic cooperation, including for Agriculture and Food Processing, IT & Telecommunications, Roads, Sustainable Urban Development and Energy. During the visit of French President to India (14-15 February 2013), the two countries further agreed to establish an annual bilateral Economic and Financial Dialogue (EFD) between the two Finance Ministries on economic and financial issues. The first such Economic and Financial Dialogue was held in Paris on 29th October 2013.

10. Bilateral Agreements/Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)

India and France have signed a number of Agreements to facilitate the expansion of commercial relations. Among these are the Double Taxation Avoidance Convention (DTAC) [where India has requested a protocol, to amend Article 28 to insert new disclosure norms on which bilateral consultations are continuing], Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPPA), MoU on cooperation in Tourism, MoU on Intellectual Property and a Social Security Exemption Agreement (SSA). In October 2012, India and France signed an Agreement for cooperation in the field of Sustainable Urban Development. Another MoU on Bilateral Cooperation in Food Industries Sector was signed on 24th October 2012. During the visit of French President to India (14-15 February 2013), the two countries concluded an MoU between the Ministry of Railways of the Republic of India and the French National Railways (SNCF) on Technical Cooperation in the field of Railway Sector as well as a General Framework Agreement between Oséo (the French Innovation Promotion Agency) and Technology Development Board (TDB) of India to establish a collaborative framework under which Oséo and TDB may carry out activities related to the exchanging of best practices and the setting up of coordinated measures to foster technological exchanges and innovation collaborations between companies, organizations and institutions of France and India. The following four agreements/MoUs were signed during the visit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to France on 10-11 April, 2015: i) MoU on cooperation in the field of renewable energy between the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India and the Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, Government of France; ii) Railway Protocol between Indian Ministry of Railways and French National Railways (SNCF) on cooperation in semi high speed rail and station renovation; iii) MoU between National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), India and the National Commission for Vocational Qualifications (Commission Nationale de la Certification Professionnelle - CNCD); iv) Letter of Intent on Tourism. During French President François Hollande’s visit to Indian in January 2016, MoUs were signed in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Mr. Hollande in the field of smart and sustainable cities and helicopter production as also JV agreements and Letters of Intent in the field of renewable energy/wind energy.

11. Agreement on Social Security

An Agreement on Social Security exemption was signed during Prime Minister’s visit in September 2008. The Agreement has been ratified by the two sides and has come into force on 1st July, 2011. The agreement will protect the interests of expatriate workers and the companies on a reciprocal basis.  It helps workers by (i) providing for exemption from social security contribution in case of short-term contracts;  (ii) exportability of pension in case of relocation to the home country or any third country; and (iii) totalization of the contribution periods.

12. VIE (Volontariat International en Enterprise)

Voluntary International Apprenticeship Program: Under this scheme, started in 2008, young French interns/graduates are sent to French companies in India as trainees for a period of one year. The cost is borne by the company utilizing the trainee, with Government defraying certain costs and offering tax subsidies to companies utilizing the scheme. At present there is a cap of 250 visas per annum under the scheme, and the validity of the scheme has been extended till September 2020.

13. CEOs Forum

During French President’s visit to India in January 2008, it was decided to establish an India-France Foundation which could begin as an India-France high level CEO’s Round Table. An announcement was made during PM’s visit to France in September 2008 to set up an India-France High level CEOs Forum. The Indian side is headed by Mr. Dhruv Sawhney, Chairman, Triveni Engineering & Industries (earlier by Mr. Narayana Murthy, Chief Mentor of Infosys). The French side is headed by Mr. Paul Hermelin, CEO of Capgemini and Special Representative of the French Government for Indo-French Economic Relations. The 1st meeting of the Forum was held in New Delhi on 28-29 November 2009; 2nd meeting took place on 24-25 June 2010 at Paris; 3rd meeting was held in New Delhi on 6th December 2010; 4th meeting held in Paris on 30-31 January 2012; 5th meeting of the Forum held in New Delhi on 22-23 November 2012 which discussed issues related to India-France collaboration on various PPP projects in infrastructure, sustainable development with focus on energy efficiency and corporate social responsibility, especially in the field of promoting education. During the visit of the French President to India on 14-15 February 2013, the CEO’s forum presented its recommendations on Private-Public Partnerships, Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development to the two governments. The 6th meeting of the CEO Forum was held in Paris on 8-9 July 2013. The meeting discussed issues related to Education and employability through skill building. The Indian CEOs called on the French President and were assured that they would be treated at par with French businesses when investing in France. The 7th meeting of the CEO’s Forum was held in Paris, France on 9th April 2015 as a precursor to the visit of the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to France in April, 2015. The French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Mr. Laurent Fabius, was present at the Forum as also Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Mr. Amitabh Kant. 30 CEOs took part in this event. The topics discussed included Energy, Water, Agro and Food Processing, Skill Development and Education, Defence and Aerospace and Life Sciences. There was a decision to constitute five Task Forces with designated Sherpas on (i) Energy (conventional and renewable) (ii) Water and Waste (iii) Life Sciences (iv) Defence & Aerospace and (v) Infrastructure Financing; the 8th meeting of the Forum was held in Chandigarh on 24th January 2016 during the visit of President Hollande to India. The French Finance Minister Mr. Michel Sapin and Secretary Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Mr. Amitabh Kant attended this session. Projects were proposed in the following identified sectors: defence, green economy, smart cities, infrastructure & transportation, water, and financial sector. The 9th meeting of the Forum was held in Paris on 13th January, 2017. The Forum was convened in the presence of Mr. Michel Sapin, the Minister of Economy and Finance. Members reviewed the progress since the last meeting which was held in Chandigarh on 24th January, 2016 on the sidelines of the visit of President Hollande to India. The topics discussed included Smart Cities - Transport & IT, Infrastructure, Energy & Water and Defence.

14. India-France Economic Cooperation through AFD (French Agency for Development)

Pursuant to signing of a MoU in September 2008 between Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) and the French Agency for Development, the AFD extends credit for various projects in India. The priority areas for AFD economic cooperation in India are (i) energy efficiency and renewable energy within the framework of the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC), (ii) urban infrastructure (public transport, water, etc., through sustainable development projects and infrastructure development programmes such as JNNURM), and (iii) the preservation of biodiversity. The current projects being supported by the AFD include (i) ‘Reorganizing the Water Supply System of Jodhpur City in Rajasthan’, Phase II worth € 71.1 million (ii) ‘Forestry and Bio-diversity Conservation Project in Assam’ worth € 54 million (iii)  Credit Facility Agreement (CFA) for the Bangalore Metro Rail Project, Phase-I (iv) IREDA II and (v) Cochin Metro Project.

15. India-France Business Associations in France

France-India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Neuilly-sur-Seine (CCIFI) was created in 1984 as a non-profit organization that aims to promote bilateral commercial relations between India and France. It has as its members several Indian and French companies. The Mission has been working with CCIFI to promote bilateral relations through joint activities. The Chamber brings out a fortnightly newsletter in French and English which provides information in brief on various topics pertaining to economy, trade and industry.

With the support of the Mission, an India-France Business Club was started in January 2014 in Marseille, the second largest city in France after Paris and the largest port to assist Indian businesses, entrepreneurs and to generate interest about India among the French businesses in the region.

16. Activities for promoting Trade and Investment

Promotion of economic and commercial relations between India and France is a major priority for the Mission and the E&C Wing, under the direction and guidance of the Ambassador, works to promote Indian business and industry by encouraging trade and investment, assisting Indian firms with Government and private sector contacts, providing information, supporting and advising Indian companies about the French market.

The major commercial activities of the Mission include: (i) promotion of Indian goods and services in France, (ii) promotion of Brand India and corporate image of India, (iii) promotion of India as a foreign direct investment destination and (iv) promotion of the ‘Make in India’ campaign. In each of these sectors, the specific action involves information and intelligence gathering, communication and information dissemination, referral activities, advocacy, logistic management and coordination activities.

17. Recent Ministerial Visits from India to France

5-6 October, 2015 - Visit of Shri Venkaiah Naidu, Minister of Urban Development, to Bordeaux to attend a Global Intelligent Transportation Summit. During his visit, he also met France’s Minister of the Environment, Energy and Marine Affairs, Ms. Ségolène Royal, in Paris.

11-12 April, 2016 - Visit of Shri Suresh Prabhu, Minister of Railways to discuss the possible Areas of Cooperation between India and France in the Railway Sector. The Minister also addressed the ‘Emerging Forum’ organized by the Banque de France in Paris. He met Minister of State for Railways, Mr. Alain Vidalies, and also paid a courtesy call on Mr. Laurent Fabius, President of the Constitutional Council of France.

1-2 June, 2016 - Visit of Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State (Independent Charge), Commerce and Industry, to attend the Informal Gathering of the WTO Ministers on the margins of the OECD Ministerial Council Meeting in Paris.

1-5 September, 2016 - Visit of Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, Minister of Textiles to Paris during the ‘Who’s Next Première Classe’ Textile & Garments Exhibition. She met Mr. Marc-Antoine Jamet, Secretary General of LVMH, the French luxury goods group.

18-20 October, 2016 - Visit of Smt. Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Minister of Food Processing Industries, during the ‘SIAL’ Food Fair in Paris.  She met French Minister of Agriculture, Food & Forest, Mr. Stéphane Le Foll.

17-20 October, 2016 - Visit of Dr. Subash Bhambre, Minister of State (Defence Production), for ‘Euronaval’ Defence Exhibition.  During his visit, he also called on French Defence Minister, Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian.

06-07 June, 2017 - Visit of Shri Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister, for the Annual OECD Ministerial Council Meeting in Paris.

8th June, 2017 - Visit of Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Commerce & Industry, to take part at the Ministerial Meeting for WTO Negotiations on the sidelines of the OECD Ministerial Council Meeting in Paris.

19-23 June, 2017 - Visit of Shri Prakash Pant, Minister of Finance, Govt. of Uttarakhand, to participate at the ‘India Skill Week’ in Paris.

19-23 June, 2017 - Visit of Shri Priyank Kharge, Minister of Tourism & Information Technology, Govt. of Karnataka for the ‘Paris Air Show’.

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Source: Embassy of India, Paris (as per 21st July, 2017)