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Modi's August visit key to strengthening bilateral ties, says French Minister

French Minister of State for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean Baptiste Lemoyne, on Monday opined Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to France in August this year will be crucial in strengthening bilateral ties between the two countries.

Speaking to ANI, Lemoyne, who is in India to lay the groundwork of Modi's visit to France to attend the G7 summit in Biarritz, said French President Emmanuel Macron was "happy" to invite the Indian Prime Minister.

"President Macron and Prime Minister Modi have a strong relationship personally and that is why he was happy to invite Modi to join the G7 leaders meeting at the end of August," he said.

"India could provide a very interesting experience for the work that will be done in terms of numeric. Modi's participation will be preceded by bilateral visit; that could be a very important moment in the relations," the French Minister added.

During Lemoyne's stint in India, he is scheduled to call on External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. "On behalf of the French government, he will congratulate Minister Jaishankar on his appointment," a statement issued by the French Embassy read.

It added, "The meeting will focus on the further deepening of the Indo-French strategic partnership and its contribution to more stable and sustainable world governance."

The French Minister is also expected to Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Hardeep Singh Puri, to discuss bilateral trade, investment, and cooperation in the field of urban affairs.

Lemoyne will later interact with Indian alumni of French higher education institutions in the fields of business administration, engineering, and design and students of the Alliance Francaise de Delhi.