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India and France agree to expand cooperation on the Indo-Pacific body

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India, and France agree to expand cooperation on the Indo-Pacific body

Recently India and France have agreed to enhance cooperation in the ‘Indo-Pacific region’.

The two countries have reaffirmed their shared commitment to deepen the Indo-French Strategic Partnership in view of the ever-changing geopolitical developments (particularly in the Indo-Pacific region).India and France agree to expand cooperation on the Indo-Pacific body

Despite not having a territorial presence in the Indo-Pacific, both these countries continue to exert influence here as resident powers.

Key activities of Indo-France in the Indo-Pacific region –

  • Both countries have expressed their interest in resuming cooperation under the India-France-Australia Trilateral Mechanism.
  • As part of their cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, the two countries have agreed to work towards the establishment of the Indo-Pacific Trilateral Development Cooperation Fund.
  • The objective of the fund is to help India-based innovators and startups take their innovations to third countries (especially the Indo-Pacific region).
  • The fund will also explore opportunities to undertake development projects under the International Solar Alliance Framework and its STAR-C project.
  • Bilateral ties will be expanded to new areas such as blue economy and ocean governance.

Significance of the Indo-Pacific for India and France

  • The region’s trade and economy account for 62% of the world’s GDP. Also, it contributes to 46% of the global merchandise.
  • Increase trade and investment cooperation by encouraging greater movement of goods, services and technology between India and other countries.
  • Sustainable development will be promoted through the development of Blue Economy.
  • France’s 93% exclusive economic zone (EEZ) is located in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean.

Challenges related to Indo-Pacific-

  • China’s growing military presence in the Indo-Pacific has created security challenges in the region.
  • The security of Sea Routes of Communication (SLOCS) has been threatened.
  • There are also increasing concerns such as piracy, terrorism, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, etc.

Source – The Hindu

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