New Delhi: India and France on Saturday reviewed the progress of a preliminary pact to build six nuclear power plants producing 10 gigawatts of energy to power Asia’s third-largest economy.
The review was under taken by Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj and visiting French foreign minister Yves Le Drian in New Delhi.
Le Drian’s two-day visit comes a day after the Supreme Court ruled on Friday that it found no evidence of wrongdoing in the government’s decision-making process to procure 36 Rafale aircraft from French company Dassualt Aviation. The court also rejected petitions for an investigation into the ₹ 59,000 crore deal. It was unclear from the public statements of Swaraj and Le Drian whether this matter came up for discussion during their meeting on Saturday.
During talks, the two sides also agreed to “launch projects together in Africa, particularly in the area of sustainable development in connection with the International Solar Alliance(ISA)," Le Drian later told reporters in New Delhi, according to a statement emailed by the French embassy in the capital.
The ISA was launched by French President Emmanuel Macron and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a summit earlier this year.
According to Le Drian, the six nuclear power reactors that France is planning to construct at Jaitapur in Maharashtra will “account for a total capacity of almost 10 GW, which is a significant contribution to India’s aim of producing 40% of its electricity from non-fossil fuels by 2030, in keeping with its commitments made ahead of the Paris Climate Conference."
“The Jaitapur project will also contribute to Make in India as it involves transfers of production, technology, joint research and training," he said.