President François Hollande arrived in India on February 14 for a two-day official visit. Accompanied by a string of French business leaders, the Head of State assured that help to advance certain issues critical to industrial France.
Questions about the sale of the Rafale did not fail during the joint press conference of François Hollande and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, on February 14.
"Discussions on the MMRCA contract (multirole combat aircraft) are progressing well," he told the Indian Prime Minister told reporters.
Progress also recognized by the French President: "The Prime Minister (Indian) and I have seen progress in the discussion and I am hopeful that we can reach a conclusion."
"We're not there to sign contracts but to move files," said the Elysee L'Usine Nouvelle. Indeed, neither the sale of Rafale or the contract to build two EPRs at Jaitapur will be finalized at the time. French side, it was noted that the Indian Army has not used its large contracts signed during state visits.
MRCA contract negotiations for the delivery of 126 Rafales to the Indian Army, started in early 2012, are far from being completed.
Exhibiting at Aero India February 7, NAK Browne, Chief of Staff of the Indian Air Force has ensured that the project was "on very good track." "If all goes well, we will be in a position to sign the contract before half of the year" (2013), he confirmed to AFP. "We hope that at least by April-May, the Committee of contract negotiations (CNC) has completed its work for (the contract) can go to the Ministry of Finance, where it will be reviewed before going to government for a final agreement, "he said.