EAM Jaishankar speaks to French counterpart Le Drian
New Delhi: The cooperation between India and France with respect to the Indo-Pacific has a larger significance, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Sunday after speaking to his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian.
India and France have been ramping up cooperation in the Indo-Pacific in the last few years in the backdrop of increasing Chinese assertiveness in the region.
“Delighted to speak to French Foreign Minister @JY_LeDrian today. We recognized that our achievements of 2021 are a strong foundation for 2022. The presidency of EU that France occupies adds an important dimension to our strategic relationship,” Jaishankar tweeted.
“Our cooperation with respect to the Indo-Pacific has a larger significance,” he added after his telephonic talks with Le Drian.
France has taken the six-month rotating presidency of the European Union.
French Defence Minister Florence Parly, during a visit to India last month, said China is getting more and more aggressive in the Indo-Pacific and the South China Sea and that there is a need to ensure freedom of navigation and compliance with international rules.
The ties between India and France are on an upswing with cooperation witnessing a significant expansion in key areas.
The areas of defence and security, civil nuclear cooperation and trade and investment constitute the principal pillars of the Indo-French strategic partnership.
In addition, India and France are increasingly engaged in new areas of cooperation such as in the Indian Ocean region, climate change and sustainable growth and development.
In the last few days, Jaishankar spoke to his counterparts from the US, Russia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Singapore, United Arab Emirates and Nigeria.
He also spoke to foreign ministers of Egypt, Israel, Australia, Indonesia, Maldives, Bhutan and Iran.