Railways Current Affairs

India, France ink 14 agreements

India and France singed 14 key agreements in strategic areas of security, nuclear energy, protection of classified information and also in field of education, environment, urban development and railways.

These agreements were signed after extensive bilateral talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron in New Delhi. French President Macron was in India on four-day official state visit. His visit was aimed at strengthening bilateral economic, political and strategic dimension of engagement between India and France.

Signed Agreement are

  • MoU on cooperation in the field of Environment.
  • MoU on technical cooperation in the field of Railways.
  • India-France Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement.
  • Agreement to facilitate Mutual Recognition of Academic Qualifications.
  • Letter of Intent for creation of permanent Indo-French Railways Forum.
  • Agreement on cooperation in the field of Sustainable Urban Development.
  • MoU for co-operation in projects in ISA member countries in areas of solar energy
  • Implementing Arrangement for pre-formulation studies of a Maritime Awareness Mission.
  • Agreement regarding provision of reciprocal logistics support between their Armed Forces.
  • Bilateral Arrangement on cooperation in matter of Hydrography and Maritime Cartography.
  • Agreement regarding exchange and reciprocal protection of classified or protected information
  • Credit Facility Agreement of Euros 100 million for funding of Smart City Projects through a Challenge Process
  • Industrial Way Forward Agreement between NPCL and EDF, France for construction of six nuclear reactors at Jaitapur, Maharashtra.
  • Agreement on Prevention of Illicit Consumption and Reduction of Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Chemical Precursors and Related Offences.

India-France relations

India and France share close and friendly relation. The relationship is based on shared values and real convergence on a whole range of regional and global issues. Both countries had announced a Strategic Partnership’ in 1998 and since then, relationship has been further strengthened.

Both countries have enhanced and ongoing cooperation in defence, maritime, space, security, and energy-related sectors. They are also increasingly working together on all issues of concern including terrorism, climate change, sustainable growth and development, infrastructure, smart urbanization, S&T cooperation, and youth exchanges.

France is a major supplier of military equipment to India. It was one of few nations that did not condemn India’s nuclear tests in 1998. It was first country with which India entered into agreement on Civil Nuclear Cooperation in 2008. France is one of largest suppliers of nuclear fuel to India. It also supports India’s bid to become permanent member of UN Security Council (UNSC) as well as G-8.

The bilateral trade between India and France for period April 2016 to March 2017 had reached US$ 10.95 billion. France is 9th largest foreign investor in India with cumulative investment of US $6.09 billion from 2000 to 2017. Close to 1,000 French companies are present in India. About 120 Indian companies have invested in France and employ close to 7,000 people.

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India, UAE inks 5 MoUs

India and United Arab Emirates (UAE) have signed five Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) in key areas of energy sector, railways, manpower and financial services.

These agreements were signed in PM Narendra Modi’s visit to Abu Dhabi. They were signed in presence of PM Modi, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi HH Sheikh Mohammed bin and Deputy Supreme Commander of UAE Armed Forces Zayed Al Nahyan at the Presidential Palace, Abu Dhabi.

Signed Agreements are

  • MoU for Technical Cooperation in Rail Sector
  • MoU to institutionalise the collaborative administration of contractual employment of Indian workers in UAE.
  • MoU between Indian Consortium (OVL, BPRL & IOCL) and ADNOC: It was signed for acquisition of 10% participating interest in the offshore Lower Zakum Concession.
  • MoU between Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX): It seeks to enhance cooperation between both the countries in financial services industry.
  • MoU between Government of Jammu and Kashmir and DP World: It seeks to establish multi-modal logistics park and hub in Jammu comprising warehouses and specialized storage solutions.

India-UAE Relations

India-UAE Relations deeply rooted in history and strategic cooperation which is driven by mutual aspirations of both countries. UAE is lynch-pin of the economic, defence and strategic strands of  India’s coordinated strategy to outreach west Asia.

UAE is India’s third largest trading partner after China and the United States. Bilateral trade between India and UAE stood at about $50 billion in 2015-16. It is among the top investors in India in terms of foreign direct investments (FDI) and was the fifth largest supplier of crude oil to India in 2015-16. Besides, there are also more than 2.6 million Indians living in the UAE and their annual remittance is estimated to be around $14 billion.

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