India, France to cooperate in space exploration

Tuesday, 30 September 2008, 07:00 Hrs
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Paris: India and France, two of the global leaders in space exploration, Tuesday signed an agreement "on cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space".

"Indo-French space cooperation has been exemplary, enjoying a long, fruitful and successful history. We welcome the signature of a bilateral framework agreement on cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space," Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and President Nicolas Sarkozy said in a joint statement after the India-France summit here.

"France has been an important partner in this field for four decades and continues to be of importance for ISRO (Indian Space research Organisation) for the supply of high-technology items. The commercial agreement for use of India's PSLV (Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle) for launch of European satellites marks a new milestone in the relationship between India and France in the area of space," it said.

ISRO and CNES are also working as equal partners in Megha Tropiques Joint Satellite Mission which is progressing well along with SARAL (Satellite for Argos and Altika), slated to be launched in 2009-10 and which will contribute to better scientific understanding of weather and climate related issues, the statement noted.

"Institutional linkages in the space sector are being envisaged through exchanges between the Indian Institute of Space Technology (IIST) and Ecole Polytechnique," it said. "In this respect, we welcome the signature of an agreement on training between concerned institutions."
Source: IANS
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