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Engaging the WorldIndian Foreign Policy since 1947$
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Sumit Ganguly

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199458325

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199458325.001.0001

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India’s Foreign Policy toward France

India’s Foreign Policy toward France

A Strategic Partnership First

(p.245) 9 India’s Foreign Policy toward France
Engaging the World

Jean-Luc Racine

Oxford University Press

India’s foreign policy regarding France exemplifies what New Delhi expects from its multi-directional diplomacy, which allows multiple partnerships rather than a strong one-sided alliance. The history of the bilateral relations is marked by a tradition of nuclear cooperation, a shared quest for strategic autonomy, the moderate French reaction to India’s nuclear tests of 1998 and a clear support to UN Security Council enlargement. In the strategic partnership developed after 1998, defence deals and space take the lead while investments and trade need to be expanded. Beyond the important role of individual leaders in shaping the policy, and despite differences of views on some global issues and the slow pace of negotiations on sensitive technologies, bipartisan consensus has emerged in both countries for developing a relationship which is seen as truly significant, although not at the top of the respective foreign policy agenda.

Keywords:   India, France, strategic partnership, strategic autonomy, defence deals, space, nuclear cooperation, UN reform

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