French President Macron said this during his two-day (January 25-26) visit to India
French President Emmanuel Macron who paid a state visit to India as the chief guest for the 75th Republic Day on Friday emphatically maintained the reason for deepening his country’s relations with New Delhi by saying that “India is a major power at the heart of the world’s reinvention.”
“Why is our presence in India important? Because India is a major power at the heart of the world’s reinvention, Together, we will rise to the challenges of our century,” French embassy in India on Saturday posted on X after translating President Macron’s statement given in French during a programme in India’s national capital on Friday. 

This sentiment also reverberates in the India-France joint statement issued on the occasion of President Macron's visit on January 25-26
“The presence of the President of the French Republic in the 75th Republic Day of India is a symbol of our shared commitment to democracy, liberty, equality, fraternity, and justice, and is a tribute to the depth of friendship and the strength of the partnership between the two countries,” India-France joint statement maintained.
President Macron was accompanied by a strong high-level delegation, including Ministers of Armed Forces, Culture, European and Foreign Affairs, as well as senior officials of the French government and CEOs and industry leaders.
Earlier, President Droupadi Murmu received her French counterpart Macron at the Rashtrapati Bhavan and hosted a banquet in his honour. While welcoming President Macron, she said the leaders of the two countries being guests of honour in each other's successive National Day parade and celebrations, is a historic moment, and “a symbol of the depth of our friendship and the strength of our partnership.”
During his visit to Jaipur, Macron and Prime Minister Narendra Modi discussed bilateral ties and pressing global issues wherein they expressed “grave concerns” at the possibility of further expansion of the conflict in the Middle East, including in the Red Sea. In their joint statement they called for upholding the freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and underlined the need for respecting the international law of the sea.

“They recalled the utmost importance of upholding freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and of respecting the international law of the sea. They had detailed conversation aimed at coordinating their efforts in that region in this regard,” India-France joint statement maintained.
They also expressed deep concern over the war in Ukraine and its tragic humanitarian consequences. They underscored the need for a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace in Ukraine in accordance with international law, and consistent with the principles of the UN Charter.
They underscored the growing impact of this war on the global economic system and food security, with consequences predominantly affecting developing and least developed countries.
Regarding the Indo-Pacific region, the two leaders, as per the joint statement, reiterated commitment to further deepen the long-standing partnership between the two countries for “advancement of a free, open, inclusive, secure and peaceful Indo-Pacific and beyond.”
Describing their defence and security partnership as the “cornerstone” of India-France partnership in the Indo-Pacific region, the two leaders, “agreed to intensify their cooperation in the Southwest Indian Ocean, building on the joint surveillance missions carried out from the French island territory of La Reunion in 2020 and 2022.”
The two leaders reaffirmed their unequivocal condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, including cross border terrorism, and shared their resolve to stand together in the common fight against global terrorism.
They further agreed that no country should provide safe haven to those who finance, plan, support, or commit terrorist acts. The leaders also called for concerted action against all terrorists, including through designations or individuals affiliated with groups that are listed by the UN Security Council 1267 Sanctions Committee.
The two leaders, as per the joint statement, emphasized the importance of upholding international standards on anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism, consistent with Financial Action Task Force recommendations. Both countries reiterated their commitment to work together in FATF, NMFT and other multilateral platforms.

Both leaders strongly condemned the terrorist attack on Israel on 7 October and expressed solidarity with the people of Israel. Condemning the huge loss of civilian lives in the ongoing conflict, they emphasised the need to respect international humanitarian law and to create conditions, including through a humanitarian ceasefire, for aid to flow to the affected population in the Gaza region.
They also called for an immediate and unconditional release of all hostages. The two leaders reaffirmed that a political process leading to a two-state solution for the Israeli and Palestinian people is required for lasting peace and stability in the region.
On defence and security partnership, they welcomed the outcomes and the directions set by the 5th Annual Defence Dialogue chaired by the two Defence Ministers, and the Maritime Cooperation Dialogue held in October 2023.
They expressed satisfaction with the increasing complexity and interoperability of India-France joint defence exercises across air, sea and land and agreed to consider a distinct joint tri-services exercise. They also discussed actively increasing capacities, particularly in the maritime domain, by joining hands with other like-minded countries.

In a reflection of the deep mutual trust and confidence between the two countries, and drawing strength from their decades-old cooperation in advanced technologies, President Macron and Prime Minister Modi reiterated their commitment to further deepening the integration between the two countries’ respective defence industrial sectors and to work together to identify opportunities for co-design, co-development, co-production with the objective of not only fulfilling the defence needs of the Indian armed forces, but also of providing a viable and reliable source of defence supplies to other friendly countries.
They noted that defence industrial collaboration, especially from the design stage, not only creates quality jobs for the youth and advances Prime Minister’s vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat, but also supports a broader progress in scientific, technological, digital and material sciences fields to realise the vision of Viksit Bharat for 2047. Towards this end, the two leaders welcomed the adoption of an ambitious Defence Industrial Roadmap.

In the broader context of the ambitious collaboration, and as more detailed in the industrial roadmap, they welcomed the progress in the establishment of the MRO for LEAP engines in India by Safran and the plans to add MRO for Rafale engines, a comprehensive helicopter partnership with a Joint Venture for IMRH engine between HAL and Safran, and the Scorpene submarines constructed in India, including indigenisation.
They also welcomed the discussions between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the French Directorate General of Armament (DGA), and intend to conclude an Arrangement MoU in an early timeframe.

On space, the two leaders welcomed the establishment of the Strategic Space Dialogue, launched in June 2023 to provide strategic guidance and direction across all aspects of space cooperation.
They rededicated themselves to further expanding space cooperation for the benefit of their countries, humanity and the planet, including through co-development, manufacture and launch of satellites and payloads, research in new launch vehicle technologies and reusable launch vehicles and connecting the startups and users in both countries.
They agreed to take full advantage of the opportunities in the Space sector in both countries. They welcomed the MoU between NSIL and Arianespace to build a long-term partnership on satellite launch missions. Prime Minister Modi and President Macron welcomed the signing of the Letter of Intent on Defence Space Cooperation.
On trade and commerce, the two leaders reiterated their firm support to the ongoing negotiations for an India-EU Free Trade Agreement. They also noted the progress in the deliberations of the bilateral CEOs Forum, following its meeting on July 14, 2023. Noting the record level of bilateral trade in 2023, they acknowledged that there is a vast untapped potential for trade and investment.

Both leaders highlighted the need to maintain strong confidence for companies investing in France and in India. They both acknowledged the importance of the Fast-track mechanism, a unique bilateral forum to address issues pertaining to investments.
Both sides highlighted the emergence of France as the most attractive investment destination in Europe and of India as the fastest-growing major economy, driven by ambitious and bold reforms in both countries. Prime Minister Modi welcomed the strong growth in investments by French companies, including SMEs, across a broad range of sectors in India, which contribute to expanding the pool of quality jobs and internships for the Indian youth and French VIEs.

Both leaders also welcomed the decision of Airbus in partnership with Tata Advanced System to begin the assembly of civilian helicopters in India. They will become the first private sector companies to produce helicopters in India, in line with the strategy of Atmanirbhar Bharat.

 They also noted the decision of Airbus to give growing orders for aircraft parts in India for its assembly plants in Europe. Both leaders agreed to facilitate more Indian investments to France and French investments to India. They noted the initiatives by the French and Indian companies to increase their footprint in low carbon energy in India.
It was also noted that India was committed to working in this domain and had recently announced Indicative targets for use of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) for international flights. Both sides recognized the know-how and expertise of French companies in railway transportation and acknowledged the potential for cooperation in this area to meet growing infrastructure needs in India.