French investigative web site Mediapart, which final month quoted former French President François Hollande as claiming the Indian authorities had nearly thrust Reliance Defence as offsets accomplice on France, on Wednesday mentioned it had a Dassault doc proving the identical. The report got here whilst defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman left for a three-day go to to France on Wednesday night time.
Mediapart claimed the doc confirmed the alliance with Reliance Defence was certainly introduced as “a trade-off” to acquire the contract, quoting a presentation made by Dassault’s deputy chief government officer Loik Segalen to the corporate’s employees representatives in Nagpur. The partnership with Reliance Defence was described as “imperative and mandatory”, as per the report.
Previously, Hollande had appeared to distance himself from the quotes attributed to him by the web site. An AFP report mentioned when requested about India pitching for the Reliance Group, Hollande mentioned he was unaware of this and that the French agency would have the ability to deal with the problem.
The French authorities and Dassault promptly rebutted Hollande’s declare final month. The Indian defence ministry, too, dismissed the controversy as “unnecessary”, sustaining it had by no means urged any firm’s identify because the offsets accomplice within the deal. Under the contract, the French corporations concerned should plough again 50% of the contract worth to India as offsets or re-investments.
The MoD says, “As per offsets guidelines, the vendor (Dassault) is to provide the details of the offset partners either at the time of seeking offset credits or one year prior to discharge of offset obligations, which in this case will be due from 2020.”
The French authorities mentioned it was “in no manner involved” within the alternative of Indian industrial companions which have been, or are being, chosen by the French corporations concerned within the deal. “French Companies have the full freedom to choose the Indian partner Companies that they consider to be the most relevant, and then present for the Indian government’s approval the offsets projects that they wish to execute with their local partners,” it mentioned.