NEW DELHI: French President Emmanuel Macron is likely to arrive in Jaipur on January 25 for a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a day ahead of the 75th Republic Day celebrations where he has been invited as the chief guest this year. A 50-member delegation including officials and CEOs will accompany President Macron.
“President Macron will receive a royal welcome upon his arrival. His bilateral meeting with PM Modi will cover various sectors including defence, space, energy, maritime security, education, indigenous manufacturing of defence equipment, migration and mobility and Indo Pacific. Some announcements are expected to be made by the end of the day and MoUs will be signed,” said a source.
India and France’s bilateral trade last year 2022-23 was $13.5 billion and this is expected to increase further. The two countries are celebrating 26 years of their strategic partnership.
“A major announcement is expected to be made in the education sector. France has been encouraging Indian students to study in their universities and in order to make the courses more attractive many courses are being offered in English. Besides, under the migration and mobility partnership extended visas for Indian students are also likely to be issued,” the source added.
Discussions are likely to be held on the Jaitapur nuclear power plant in Maharashtra.
PM Modi and President Macron have met four times in the past six months — during the former’s visit to France on Bastille Day, the G20 Summit, COP 28 and the G20 Virtual Summit.
Ahead of President Macron’s visit, his diplomatic advisor Emmanuel Bonne and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval met in Delhi last week, working out details for his trips to Jaipur and then to Delhi.
Meanwhile, a French contingent is expected to take part in the parade on January 26 on Kartavya Path. It may be recalled that a 269-member Indian contingent took part in the Bastille Day parade in France last year.