New Delhi: Stating that the world is amid multiple crises, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar said France has been a "trusted partner" of India, which is central to multipolarity and rebalancing the international community.
"Succinctly put, I would say, as a major power with a global outlook and an independent mindset; one that is central to multipolarity and rebalancing and is extremely responsive to India's concerns and priorities that has a long history as a trusted partner. And one which is becoming even more relevant as we jointly address contemporary and emerging challenges," Dr Jaishankar said in his speech at the French Institute of International Relations in Paris on 'How India sees France'
In response to new global challenges and uncertainty, the Minister said polities are searching for reliable and resilient partners.
"Those with shared values and common vision obviously fit the bill more perfectly. That is certainly the case with France and India. Especially in the last two decades, India has transformed many of its relationships, in its extended neighbourhood, as much as at the global level. Our relationship with France, though, is one that bridges multiple generations. History is certainly an asset for this particular account," he added.
"… I can assert with genuine confidence that it (Indo-French tie up) is the strongest now since our journey as an independent nation began 75 years ago," he said.
Earlier, the External Affairs Minister hinted at security problems posed by China in the Indo-Pacific region at a conference on Indo-Pacific cooperation between the European Union and a select group of Asian foreign ministers. "Today, we see challenges on that score with the clarity that proximity brings," Jaishankar said. He added: "And believe me, distance is no insulation. The issues we confront in the Indo-Pacific will extend beyond, even to Europe."