Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to discuss trade and investment ties with leaders of France, Germany and Canada in a high-powered 9-day trip that begins on Thursday.
Nuclear trade, Modi’s “Make in India” initiative, and wooing investment from these three industrialised nations will be high on the agenda of the Indian Prime Minister’s trip. Official statistics, however, show the euro-area recovery remains uneven, still plagued by falling prices and high unemployment.
In Paris, Modi will attend two round-tables with French CEOs on infrastructure and defense, said S. Jaishankar, Indian Foreign Secretary, ahead of the Prime Minister’s departure.
France’s GDP rose 0.4 per cent in 2014 as the country struggles with its worst three-year growth performance since World War II.
The Indian Prime Minister will also speak at UNESCO.
In talks with French President Francois Hollande, Modi is expected to push for a speedy conclusion to negotiations, now in the sixth year, over building of two nuclear reactors in India by France’s state-run Areva SA .
Global suppliers, including those from US and France, are concerned about the liability clause of India’s nuclear law.
India’s Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Act (CLNDA) of 2010 empowers victims of any future nuclear accident to sue foreign suppliers for huge potential liability, which is holding back companies from doing business with India.
In Toulouse, Modi will also tour France’s Airbus facility and the offices of CNES (French space authority).
During his Germany visit, Modi will hold talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Hanover and in Berlin, where the two leaders will discuss energy cooperation and trade ties.
In Canada, Modi is expected to announce a deal for buying nuclear fuel after meeting Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
“We look forward to resuming our civil nuclear energy cooperation with Canada, especially for sourcing uranium fuel for our nuclear power plants,” Modi said in a recent Facebook post.
Meanwhile, a showdown between Greece and its European partners over the country’s debt has rekindled the risk of a euro break up.
Euro-area GDP probably expanded 0.2 percent last quarter, say new surveys.
The Indian Prime Minister is visiting France, Germany and Canada from April 9-17.