UPSC Editorial Analysis

Significance of India and France being Steady Partners in Green Growth

GS Paper 2 - International Relations, Treaties and Agreements


The Indo-French Horizon 2047 Roadmap places great emphasis on the “Partnership for the Planet,” which India and France highlighted at a recent event in Paris. The road map highlights the countries’ increased collaboration on climate change, biodiversity, health, and environmental challenges.

With an emphasis on innovation, the alliance is expanding to include Indo-Pacific biodiversity activities. France, via the French Development Agency (AFD), is still dedicated to helping India on its path to equity and resilience. As part of this commitment, cooperative ideas will be on display in 2026 during the Indo-French Year of Innovation.

Key Initiatives related to Indo-French Horizon 20247 Roadmap

  • Partnership for Planet and Global Issues –
    • Environment:
      • Initiatives centered on waste management, water conservation, and sustainable urban development are the main ways that Indo-France and other countries support environmental sustainability.
      • The focus of AFD-supported projects like the Pune metro system and Chandigarh’s water supply system is on developing sustainable urban infrastructure.
      • Pledges to reduce plastic pollution by means of global accords, recycling initiatives, and creative fixes.
    • Climate Change

      • Finance programs for sustainable energy projects, decarbonized hydrogen generation, and support for clean energy technology. This entails decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, increasing energy efficiency, and supporting renewable energy.
      • India and France co-founded the International Solar Alliance, which encourages the use of solar energy in nations with abundant solar radiation in order to lessen reliance on fossil fuels.
      • Through organizations like the French Development Agency (AFD), France has contributed more than 4 billion euros to climate projects in India since 2008, promoting everything from renewable energy to climate-resilient infrastructure.
    • Biodiversity

      • In order to save endangered species and hotspots for biodiversity, both nations are actively working on conservation projects. Together, we can preserve India’s unique biodiversity through projects like the AFD-supported one-horned rhino conservation in Assam.
      • In terms of financial commitment, India is the AFD’s main partner. Its portfolio dedicates a large 63% of its total to achieving gender equality.
    • Partnership for People

      • Student Mobility – offering 5-year short-stay visas to Indian master’s degree holders and aiming to enroll 30,000 Indian students in France by 2030.
      • Diplomatic and Consular Networks – Establishing new consulates in Hyderabad and Marseilles expands the diplomatic and consular network.
      • Culture – Working together to exchange audio-visual materials and build a new National Museum in New Delhi.
      • Research – The Indo-French Centre for Advanced Research will receive more financing.
    • Partnership for Security and Sovereignty

      • Indo-Pacific – Together, France and India have developed a plan to strengthen Indo-Pacific cooperation, with a particular emphasis on economic cooperation, maritime security, and developing strategic alliances with neighboring countries.
      • Defence – The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has given its approval for the Navy to purchase 26 Rafale aircraft. He stated that although there might not be a formal announcement soon, vigorous conversations are now taking place over price and contractual procedures.
      • Space – In addition to working together on satellite launches, ISRO and the French Space Agency (CNES) have been conducting a number of cooperative research projects. For instance, New Space India Ltd (NSIL) successfully launched its GSAT-24 communication satellite in 2022 from Kourou, French Guiana, on board Ariane-5.
    • Significance of Indo-France Relations

      • Indo-Pacific Security – The 2018 India-France Joint Strategic Vision for Indian Ocean cooperation is an excellent example of how France’s assistance is essential for India to oppose Chinese assertiveness in this region and maintain peace in the Indo-Pacific region.
      • Mutual Strategic Autonomy – The partnership is characterized by a unique balance, unaffected by anti-Western sentiment in India or Anglo-Saxon pressures in France. Furthermore, France was the first major state to hold negotiations with India following the nuclear tests in May 1998, at which point India declared itself to be a nuclear-weapon State.
      • International Organization Access – India’s ambitions to become a member of important organizations such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group and the UN Security Council require the support of France.
      • Global Power Balance – The alliance between India and France helps to maintain global peace and a balanced world order by reducing the power of China in Asia and Russia in Europe.
      • Defense Cooperation – France maintains strong strategic alliances and relationships that are of great importance to India’s defense industry. the purchase of French-built Rafale combat aircraft, Furthermore, France and India cooperate in defense research and development, exchange technologies, and conduct joint military drills.
    • Challenges to Indo-France Relations

      • Economic Limitations – Deeper economic links are hampered by the lack of a free trade agreement, and the EU-India Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) is at a standstill, which limits future economic integration.
      • Trade and Intellectual Property Issues – France benefits from a trade imbalance as it has higher exports to India and has frequently voiced concerns about the insufficient protection of intellectual property rights for French companies operating in India. Certain negotiated projects, like the nuclear project at Jaitapur, have operational difficulties.
      • Divergent Geographical Stances – Diverse perspectives on international matters are apparent. For example, India has taken a more neutral attitude, whereas France has publicly condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
    • Measures to improve Indo-France Relations

      • Economic Engagement – With France serving as a major EU ally, expedite negotiations on the India-EU Bilateral Trade Agreement. As a stopgap, look at signing a bilateral economic partnership agreement. Other industries could benefit from the application of the Indo-French Centre for the Promotion of Advanced Research (CEFIPRA) model.
      • Negotiating Trade and IP – Form a cooperative working group to preserve intellectual property and transfer technologies. Design trade facilitation systems that are sector-specific. Incorporate private sector know-how to get over financial and technical obstacles. The Rafale jet deal’s success demonstrates how political will can get beyond challenges.
      • Managing Geopolitical Positions – Boost strategic conversations to coordinate viewpoints on world affairs and work together on topics of shared interest, like security in the Indo-Pacific region. The trilateral endeavor between France, Australia, and India shows the possibility of shared interests.
      • Addressing Global Issues – Improve information exchange, collaborate on strategic evaluations, and create coordinated crisis management plans. It might be possible to add France to the Quad (US, Australia, Japan, India) framework in some sections. Work together on projects including humanitarian relief and conflict resolution. 

Way Forward

The alliance between France and India has the potential to significantly influence the development of a stable and well-balanced international order as global dynamics change. India and France can take their collaboration to new heights, benefiting not only both countries but also contributing to world peace, security, and prosperity by utilizing their complementary assets and resolving current issues.

SOURCE: The Hindu

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