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France plans aircraft facilities in India

France intends to set up aircraft manufacturing and training facilities in India.

india Updated: Jun 15, 2006 12:57 IST

Seeking to gain a bigger foothold in India's growing aviation market and also expand trade with the country, France said it intends to set up aircraft manufacturing and training facilities in India.

"We foresee greater co-operation between both countries especially in the aeronautical sector. We are planning to set up aircraft manufacturing and training facilities here," French Ambassador to India Dominique Girard said.

His comments, during a function in New Delhion Sunday, come months after officials of Airbus Industries, headquartered in Toulouse, France, said that the aircraft manufacturer plans to outsource as much as 60 per cent of its production and intends to allocate more work to India and China.

Such a move will help the European aircraft maker gain more customers in the country, whose national carrier Indian has placed orders for 43 aircraft with Airbus.

Besides, private airlines like Kingfisher are also major customers of the aircraft maker.

Girard said he expected bilateral trade, which has already crossed the three billion dollar mark, to more than double in the next five years.

"Besides setting up these facilities in the aeronautics sector, we also plan to bring in technology transfer so that both countries can benefit through joint research and development," he said.

France is presently India's fifth largest trading partner in the European Union. Commerce Minister Kamal Nath had recently attended the 14th Indo-French Joint Committee meeting in Paris during which the two countries had explored avenues for furthering trade and economic cooperation.