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Interview Mr Kunal Kumar: India’s Smart Cities Mission, perspective for French companies

Aurélien Sostaponti - 31-mai-2019 07:10:45
BUSINESS FRANCE IN INDIA India’s Smart Cities Mission Perspectives for French companies on the occasion of Ambition India 2019 – Business France Replies by: Mr Kunal Kumar Joint Secretary (Mission Director – Smart Cities), Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA), Government of India Q1. Could you please provide a brief introduction of India’s Smart Cities Mission (SC Mission)? India’s Smart Cities Mission was launched by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on June 25, 2015. The main objective is to promote cities that provide holistic and integrated infrastructure and a great quality of life to their citizens while maintaining a clean and sustainable environment. The focus is on sustainable and inclusive development and idea is to look at compact areas, create replicable models which will act like lighthouses to other aspiring cities. The process of selection of 100 smart cities was based on the principle of Cooperative and competitive federalism —all cities were given equal opportunity to enter through All India Challenge conducted in four rounds. The cities competed in a two-stage challenge process at the State and Central level. Key features of this process were Citizen Engagement and City Empowerment where cities were encouraged to decide their aspirations and execute them with support from Central and State Government. Integration, innovation and sustainability are guiding principles of the Smart Cities implemented through provision of integrated infrastructure and services, promoting circular economy and sustainable habitats, reimagining paradigms of governance and spurring innovation in delivery of solutions. Technology is one of the many instruments that smart cities are adopting to solve urban challenges. Inclusiveness is built into the mission to ensure that each and every citizen benefits from the urban transformation that is taking place in the smart cities. Each Smart City has formulated its own concept, vision, mission and plan (Smart City Proposal--SCP) which is appropriate to its local context, resources and level of ambition. Every SCP includes core-infrastructure elements such as assured water supply, electricity supply, sanitation and solid waste management, efficient mobility and public transport, affordable housing, safety and security, health and education. Smart Solutions in SCP include a bouquet of services that ensure that service delivery levels are achieved and measured, citizen services are seamlessly delivered, grievances are timely registered and resolved and safety is increased through video surveillance and monitoring. Q2. Please share some highlights of the progress of the Smart Cities Mission since its launch in 2016? Since the launch of the mission in June 2015, the work has progressed at a brisk pace. 100 cities were selected over a period spanning from January 2016 to June 2018. Post selection, each city has incorporated an SPV or Special Purpose Vehicle, with dedicated management and organisation structure to drive the project implementation and other initiatives of the mission. The SPV has appointed the project management consultant (PMC) that will support the SPV in planning, design and implementation of the projects. The projects can be broadly categorised into four themes : • Ease of Living - urban mobility, affordable housing, water and sanitation, safety and security, vibrant open spaces • Smart Governance – Integrated Command and Control Centres, Smart Card, Online Services, Intelligent Traffic Management System, Smart Poles • Connected Communities – Smart Education/ Classrooms, Skill Development, Public Art, Built Heritage • Urban Resilience – Solar and Wind Energy, Waste to Energy Plants, Green Buildings, Energy Management The 100 smart cities have proposed to execute 5 151 projects worth € 26.65 billion (INR 2 05 018 crores) in 5 years from their respective dates of selection. Financial innovation is built in the design of their capital investment plans. 64 % of the total projects i.e. 3492 projects, worth € 17.16 billion (INR 1 32 068 crore) have been tendered in SCM of which work orders have been issued in 41 % i.e. 2745 projects worth € 11.32 billion (INR 87 131 crore). 860 projects worth € 1.88 billion (INR 14 465 crore) have been completed. This is a significant increase in pace of implementation—289 % increase in tendered projects and 358 % in implementation/completed in last 16 months! Mission Cities have successfully expedited work on key projects which include: Integrated Command and Control Centers (ICCC) in 71 cities with operational in 16 cities; Smart streets projects in 69 cities; Smart Solar energy projects in 47 cities; Smart Water management projects in 67 cities; Smart Waste Water management projects in 56 cities. Projects are being executed through Public Private Partnerships in 61 cities. Q3. With regards to the Indo-French cooperation on Smart Cities, what views would you like to share? The relationship between India and France dates back to several decades and has been scaling heights in recent years. Indian Prime Minister paid a landmark visit to France from 09-12 April 2015. Former French President Hollande paid State visit to India during 24-26 January 2016 and was our chief guest for India’s Republic Day celebration. Our Prime Ministers have been meeting regularly on different platforms. The scale of cooperation between the two countries may be understood from the fact that almost 1000 French companies are present in India with a total turnover of more than € 17.8 billion (20 Billion USD). French companies have; the third largest FDI inflow, 25 R&D centres in India and employed around 300 000 people in India. On the other side, 120 Indian companies operating in France with an estimated investment stock of 1 billion Euros and employing around 7000 people. With regard to the Smart City Mission in India, France and India are collaborating on a very interesting project, City Investments to Innovate, Integrate and Sustain (CITIIS) Challenge. CITIIS was launched on 9th July 2018 by the Smart Cities Mission, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs in partnership with Agence Française de Développement (AFD), European Union (EU) and National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA). The program, the total size of which was € 100 Million, was open to all the 100 smart cities During the Challenge process for selection of projects under CITIIS, 36 Smart cities submitted a total of 67 proposals belonging to various themes. Of these, 13 projects from 13 cities and 12 States were selected for award by a distinguished jury comprising of nine experts from India and France. MoUs have also been signed between AFD (French Development Agency) and UT of Chandigarh, Puducherry and State Government of Maharashtra for development of Chandigarh, Puducherry and Nagpur. (Support for preparation of SCPs and implementation of projects) As part of urban transport improvement initiatives in India, financial assistance to various Metro projects were provided by AFD such as Bangalore Metro (€100 million - Phase 1, € 200 million -Phase 2), Kochi Metro (€ 180 million) and Nagpur metro. With regard to technical collaboration, technical support was provided to various Metro projects such as signaling system in Bangalore Metro, telecommunication and power & traction in Kochi Metro etc. The two countries have been working together in several fields ranging from civil nuclear cooperation, defense, and space to cultural, scientific and technological areas, including cybersecurity and digital cooperation. I would like to see this cooperation grow in the areas of urban development and combating climate change. Q4. In terms of projects, kindly elaborate the type of projects for which international companies can be useful to India’s Smart Cities Mission. I would like to see international industry actively participating in India’s urban sector via one or more of the following three tracks: 1) Providing technical support/capacity building support to cities/design and execution professionals already working in India; 2) Undertaking projects design and implementation of projects through competitive bidding/consortium building; and 3) Bringing in investment to Indian projects. Some areas we would like their participation in are: • Smart energy systems, net zero cities/precincts • Urban design of complete streets Reviving local economies • Increase on disaster resilient cities and communities • Urban Mobility and Transit Oriented Development (TOD) • Design of cities promoting circular economy; water and waste management Design of accessible urban spaces for the old and the people with disabilities Q5. Could you help us understand what are and will be the different types of preferred tendering processes to be used for projects under the Smart Cities Mission? We do not prescribe any particular tendering process to be used for projects under the Smart Cities Mission. The smart city SPV has the authority to carry out the tendering process for all projects. The tendering process is often guided by the procurement rules prescribed by the state governments. The state governments have their own procurement rules, procurement manual and in some instances standard documents to be followed by the state agencies. The city SPV undertakes a project development phase for individual projects that includes preparation of the feasibility study and/or Detailed Project Report (DPR). The tendering of the projects is done after the approval of the feasibility study/DPR. The tenders are published widely to maximise participation. Most of the tenders are evaluated both on cost and quality; lifecycle costs are taken into consideration for long gestation projects. Level playing field is made available so that the best companies can participate. Their participation has been one of the highlights of the Mission. Not only the best Indian companies, but renowned international companies have participated and are successfully executing projects in various cities. Q6. Can you elaborate what is the emphasis given, under the SC Mission to 3 sectors: mobility (urban transportation), water-waste management and connectedness of services for citizens? The Smart City Mission in India is envisioned as an urban rejuvenation initiative encompassing holistic development of urban areas including, but not limiting to, smart command and control centre, smart roads, smart solar, smart waste water and smart water projects. The three sectors with regard to mobility (urban transportation), water-waste management and connectedness of services for citizens are an integral part of the Mission and have been central to its objectives.Mobility (urban transportation): Smart transportation leverages smart infrastructure that includes multi-modal connected conveyance, automated traffic signals, tolls and fare collection, data integration—incorporating weather and traffic data, linking emergency services data as well as information from government agencies— drives the system. A central command centre ties together the smart transportation ecosystem, with real-time and updated data, handling passenger information, traffic signals, incident management and vehicle health monitoring. Optimized ‘on-demand services’ ensure that citizens can use all modes of transport according to their needs. Shared mobility solutions help provide first and last mile connectivity in conjunction with public transportation, they can act as feeder services and improve access to metro/rail or bus services. We are aiming to make public transportation robust and accessible through multi-modal shared mobility, so that citizens can choose it for all their commuting needs be it travel for work, travel for daily needs or for leisure. This can help move people away from private vehicles, which can contribute to lowering congestion and pollution. Cities under the Mission, are using technology to develop such seamless and connected transportation systems. Technology driven smart public transportation offers more attractive, reliable, convenient and complete choice of mode to commute. This reduces dependency on cars, arrests urban sprawl, and enables city authorities to develop compact cities with more focus on moving people rather moving cars. Lesser cars on roads will also reduce city’s air pollution levels. Moreover, with the continuous advancement in development of electric vehicles, smart transportation is destined to transform cities to zero emission mobility smart cities. In the Mission cities till date, total of 734 smart transportation projects worth € 3.64 billion (INR 28000 crore) are under implementation/completed. Electric mobility projects worth € 0.08 billion (INR 601 crore) are under implementation/completed in 21 cities. Public transport operations and traffic management are integral part of all ICCC enabled cities. Smart streets worth € 0.67 billion (INR 5146 crore) are under implementation/completed in 35 cities. I would like to mention that this is just the tip of the iceberg and many more such projects are being conceived across the country as I pen this down. Water and Waste Management: Under Smart Cities Mission various initiatives are undertaken for improving water systems in smart cities. These projects include installation of smart water meters, providing house service connections, upgradation of water supply systems, interlinking of water network data with SCADA system etc. The aim is to upgrade the existing water supply systems to 24X7 water supply systems. A total of 315 projects with estimated cost € 2.96 billion (INR 22 817 crore) are at various stages of implementation across the Mission. Of these, 35 projects worth € 0.16 billion (INR 1218 crore) have been completed, 126 projects worth € 1.32 billion (INR 10 119 crore) are under implementation and 45 projects worth € 0.57 billion (INR 4391 crore) are under tendering stage. Several initiatives with regard to waste management are also being implemented under this mission. These projects include waste to energy plants, waste to compost plants, waste water treatment plants, recycling and reduction of construction and demolition waste etc. A total of 323 waste management projects with estimated cost € 1.96 billion (INR 15 116 crore) are at various stages of implementation across the Mission. Of these, 90 projects worth € 0.19 billion (INR 1456 crore) have been completed, 177 projects worth € 1.32 billion (INR 10 182 crore) are under implementation and the rest 56 projects worth € 0.45 billion (INR 3478 crore) are under tendering stage. Regarding waste to energy plant, a total of 18 projects worth € 0.31 billion (INR 2401 crore) in 17 smart cities are at various stages of implementation. Of these, 4 projects worth € 0.026 billion (INR 202 crore) have been completed, 6 projects worth € 0.23 billion (INR 1790 crore) are under implementation and 2 projects worth € 0.043 billion (INR 338 crore) are under tendering stage. As mentioned in the case of mobility, there are many more projects than the ones which have found mention here, and hence the amount of work that remains to be taken up is clearly very large. Connectedness of Services for Citizens: Smart Cities leverage ICT based technologies and digitalisation to make governance citizen-friendly and cost effective, bring about accountability and transparency, provide services without having to go to municipal offices, form e-groups to listen to people and obtain feedback, and use online monitoring of programs and activities with the aid of online tools. In line with this, Integrated Command and Control Centres (ICCC) are being built by many smart cities to help cities in better urban planning and management. ICCCs function as single source of information and point of resolution of the civic functions of the city. They are bringing transparency through information sharing, a step towards becoming an inclusive city. Some of the ways an ICCC will impact citizens’ lives are: • Improved decision making for (local and other levels of) governments • Improved environmental sustainability and climate change outcomes. • Improved quality of services to citizens • Safety of citizens • Making cities more inclusive A total 71 out of 100 smart cities have started work on ICCC as one of its projects under the Mission. Till date, 16 Smart Cities have operationalised ICCCs worth € 0.38 billion (INR 2927 crore), work is in progress in another 44 cities worth € 0.54 billion (INR 4170 crore) and remaining 11 cities have their projects under tendering. Q7. Regarding the finances of the projects under the SC Mission, what is the extent of the available government funding and to what extent is the PPP and the private funding expected? The Mission encompasses 100 cities which have proposed to execute 5151 projects worth € 26.65 billion (INR 2 05 018 crores) in 5 years from their respective dates of selection. innovation is built in the design of their capital investment plans. The distribution of funding envisaged from different sources is as follows: • Central and State government: € 12.16 billion (INR 93 553 crore) (45%), • Convergence : € 5.46 billion (INR 42,028 crore) (21%), • Funds from PPP : € 5.33 billion (INR 41,022 crore) (21%), • Loans/Debt : € 1.27 billion (INR 9,843 crore) (4%), • Own sources : € 0.34 billion (INR 2,644 crore) (1%), Other sources: € 2.07 billion (INR 15 930 crore) (8%). Q8. Several foreign investors have remarked that most ULBs are not financially selfsustainable and tariff levels fixed by the ULBs for providing services often do not mirror the cost of supplying the same. Could you please share your opinion in this regard with us? I ascribe to the idea of ‘Think Global, Act Local’. While most development takes place at city level, they have to be mindful of the impact of their actions on the planet. To achieve that we must empower our cities to not only act but also think, analyse and take decisions. Having said that, cities need to become autonomous in terms of meeting their financial and other resource needs for infrastructure development, and day to day management. Lack of adequate infrastructure adversely affects a city’s ability to attract investment, and hence economic sustainability. Most of the ULBs lack in mobilization of resources and financial autonomy. The total revenues of all Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) in India merely amounts to about 1% of India’s GDP. The resource base of ULBs typically consists of their own sources, state revenue, government grant, loans from state governments, and market borrowings. They are sometimes not aware of the opportunities and avenues of generating revenues through taxes and non-tax charges. Even if they are aware, they do not have the skill to optimize tax collection. ULBs in India, therefore, have a minimal revenue base and largely dependent on Central and State grants, which constrains the ability of ULBs to invest adequately in capital expenditure like creating infrastructure and, thereby, improve quality of life in the city. Strengthening capacities of ULBs is necessary for effective resource mobilization. Their financial capacity is often restricted not only by low tax base but also low capacity for mobilization of existing resources, as result of which the ULBs are not able to harness property tax as per their potential due to undervaluation; non-availability of database of properties; low rates; low collection efficiency and lack of indexation of property values. We do realise financial self-sufficiency of the ULBs is an absolute must. Steps are being taken at all levels to empower ULBs to become self-sufficient. While the Constitution of India envisaged a two-tier system of federation, the 74th Constitutional Amendment Act, 1992 added third tier of government viz. urban local bodies. The amendment aimed at devolution of functions, finances and functionaries to ULBs. We, at the Ministry encourage cities to raise funds through municipal bonds, review of property tax system to improve efficiency and transparency in collection and mobilization of resources. Only in the last couple of years we have started to see a renewed vigour from Indian cities in raising money from the market through the instrument of Muni bonds. Several new initiatives for financial innovation are also being attempted and are showing encouraging signs of transformation. We are working on Capacity building of local government leaders such as Commissioners in : • financial management, preparation of financial statements for increased efficiency • improving the quality of service delivery which is the cornerstone for effective and sustainable urbanisation • exploring innovative/alternative sources of revenue generation at the municipalities level such as PPP, Municipal bonds, venture capital financing, crowd source financing, entertainment tax, mobile towers, user charges for solid waste, water, parking, value capture financing, etc. • enhancing citizen participation, e-governance tools like on-line procurement, tenders, and online expenditure reports. I am sure with all the efforts Government is making in this direction, local governments will soon be in a better position than they were a few years ago.

Frehindi - an educational & cultural exchange bridge between India & France

Audrey Lucbernet - 29-avr.-2019 09:01:06
 Le Frehindi is an Indian SME which has set up an office in France last year. The name ‘Frehindi’, as it suggests, is derived from the languages ‘French’ and ‘Hindi’. The company is working for the benefit of students, aiming to help them become global citizens by providing them opportunities through languages, cultural exchange programs, competitions and access to international education opportunities, perfectly in line with the wish of the French President, Mr. Macron who would like to double the number of Indian students to France by 2020.   In India, “Le Frehindi” is in direct contact with twenty thousand (20,000) students who learn French language, and who participate in various competitions, events and exchange programs organized between India and France by Le Frehindi. Since its inception in France, the company has entered into partnership with various French Schools and Universities and hence bringing groups of French students to India to explore the Indian culture and heritage and vice-versa to introduce Indian students to French culture. After setting-up in Paris, Le Frehindi has opened successfully a new office, in Lyon (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes), in 2018. Check the video of Mr. Haru Mehra, Founder of  Le Frehindi talking about his success story in France https://youtu.be/pA6WTFhbAwI   

Samsung To Establish Massive AI Research Facility In France

SC - 30-mars-2018 06:50:42
The centre is to be Samsung’s third biggest after those in South Korea and the US, with more than 100 researchers Samsung and Fujitsu are to establish substantial research centres for artificial intelligence (AI) in France, the companies announced ahead of the launch of a government AI initiative set for Thursday . Samsung’s French AI base is to be its largest after those in South Korea and the US, the company said. The announcement followed a meeting between French president Emmanuel Macron and Samsung strategy chief Young Sohn in Paris. “Great progress on artificial intelligence is happening in France,” Macron said in an English-language Twitter message . “Samsung chooses France to locate its new research center on artificial intelligence, creating more than 100 jobs. Thank you Young Sohn for taking the leap.” AI expansion The Samsung centre currently employs a team of 15 people in the Paris area. It plans to expand that to 50 scientists by the end of 2018, and eventually to more than 100 experts, according to local media reports. The larger facility is to be based either in Paris or in Saclay, in the capital’s south-west outskirts. Japan’s Fujitsu also said it would expand a team of 15 AI experts that is currently based in the elite Polytechnique engineering academy near Paris. “The group, after a review that lasted more than a year, found that France stood out from the crowd in the field of artificial intelligence,” said Fujitsu France managing director Benjamin Revcolevschi, according to Reuters. Macron’s Thursday announcement is expected to include a state investment designed to build on France’s position in AI, which is in turn based on the country’s strengths in mathematics. France and the UK are competing to attract talent and start-up investment capital in areas including AI and  financial technology  as Britain prepares to depart from the European Union.   Source : Silicon.co online media,   https://www.silicon.co.uk/software/samsung-ai-research-france-230787   

The Lyra group participates in the delegation of French companies that accompanies French President Emmanuel Macron’s trip to India

Purva Marwaha - 15-mars-2018 10:43:35
    On the occasion of the French President’s visit to India on 10 th to 12 th March, 18 French companies, accompanied by The French Trade & Investment Agency - Business France, had been selected to join the President’s visit. The Lyra group, one of the leader in securing payments in e-commerce and proximity, was a part of this delegation. Present in India for more than 10 years now, Lyra currently has 60 employees in India successfully working with major banks across the country.  Beyond the recognition of its development growth in India, this trip  was an opportunity for Lyra to strengthen its network and its activities. “We are very proud to participate in this delegation that will accompany the President of the Republic France. This visit represents a unique opportunity to access key contacts, to boost our business and highlight our Indian "Success Story" , says Christophe Mariette, Chairman of Lyra India and Associate Director of Lyra Group. India is a very dynamic and innovative market with 7.6% growth per year, India is among the top 10 largest economies and is a true driver of global growth. The structuring of its market, especially around services and industry has the ease to do business which makes the country more and more attractive for international companies. In the payment sector, many changes are taking place boosting the economic growth. The vast demonetization plan launched in November 2016 has increased the use of bank cards across the country and has led to more technological advances, with a strong appetite for new mobile uses.   India is a strategic country for Lyra & the French company is contributing to several campaigns of the Government of India UPI, Bharat QR Code, Aadhar and is fully committed to Prime Minister Modi’s initiative on digitalization of the Indian economy.   Lyra has connected around 600,000 POS terminals pan India & has successfully done millions of transactions daily on payment platforms. Lyra has also brilliantly launched its ePayment Gateway   “ Payzen” which is being used by major eMerchants in the country. Lyra’s merchant Plug In(MPI) has demonstrated high success rates and reliability for a large number of eMerchants in the country. "Lyra is one of 400 French companies that have believed in the growth of the Indian market and chose to set up full-fledged operations in India," says Rajesh Desai CEO and Director Lyra India . “Today, our ambition in this highly dynamic market is to expand significantly and we are currently strengthening our Indian team to support our aggressive plans of offering highly advanced solutions in the payment space”.     About Lyra:    Founded in 2001 by Alain Lacour, Lyra secures e-commerce and proximity payments and develops value-added services to manage transactions and POS equipment on a daily basis. Based in Toulouse, Lyra is present internationally with 10 subsidiaries (India, Brazil, Germany,Spain, Colombia,Argentine, Mexico, Peru, Chile, Algerie). The group has over 250 employees for a turnover of €53M in 2017.   Lyra’s key figures:   Over 10 billion payments secured and transmitted in 2017 worldwide   Over 50,000 e-merchants   Over 3,000,000 payment terminals worldwide   Lyra’s services are certified PCI DSS, Visa Merchant Agent and approved by GIE Cartes Bancaires.   For further information visit: http://www.lyra.com      

A trade delegation of French companies organised by Business France will be in India during French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit (10th-12th March 2018)

Purva Marwaha - 08-mars-2018 08:18:34
On the occasion of the visit of the President of France, Business France accompanies a delegation of 18 French companies wishing to develop and strengthen their activity in India.   All sectors are represented: Industry, Energy, Infrastructure, Environment, Services, Health and Agriculture through the following companies:  2PS ; ABSOGER ; ACCUWATT ; DE VIALET ; ECM TECHNOLOGIES ; ELDIM ; ELISATH ; FAMOCO ; KERLINK; LABORATOIRE GILBERT ; LYRA NETWORK ; MCA PROCESS ; QOS ENERGY ; SOLEAN ; SIGFOX ; STERELA ; VALECO ; VIEUX POINTET.      Each of these companies will benefit from a specific Business Meeting program organized by Business France India. It is a huge opportunity for them to have more visibility, to participate in the highlights of the visit, to access key contacts, to accelerate their Business relations and to develop technological partnerships .   As of the top 10 largest economies today India is a driving force of global growth with the highest growth rate of the BRICS, which is expected to continue growing in the future (around 7.6% per year versus 3.5% for global growth). Moreover, the country is also committed to new important measures such as the standardization of the indirect taxation (Goods and Services Tax) which came into effect on July 1, 2017 as well as the reform of bankruptcy law to improve the ease of doing business in India (ranked 100th out of 188 countries according to the World Bank in 2018 and with an improvement of 30 places in a year). India is a growing market for our French companies with a potential to generate employment and is a huge added value and potential; in services, in the manufacturing sector and in high growth sectors like technology, software, energy and urban development. " Already over 400 French companies are in India, there is a potential for many more to come and develop business ties here ," said Sophie Clavelier, Senior Trade & Investment Commissioner for India based in New Delhi. French companies are looking forward to forging many partnerships and trade ties with our Indian counterparts in the public and private domain and this State Visit will be a huge opportunity to capitalise on for both parties.     Contact presse : Shilpa PATIL,   shilpa.patil@businessfrance.fr Cell + 91 98 33 90 22 60      

AXON’ CABLE INTERCONNECTS EVERY PART OF A VEHICLE

Purva Marwaha - 01-févr.-2018 08:24:44
Axon Cables, a manufacturer of custom design wires, composite cables, flat flex cables, will be a part of a delegation of 21 French suppliers of the automotive and electric mobility industry from 5th to 9th February 2018. The company will visit Auto Expo Motor and Components show in Delhi & will go to Chennai as well as a part of a delegation of French companies hosted by Business France -The French Trade & Investment Agency, Federation of French Vehicle Equipment Industry (FIEV) & the European Association for Electromobility (AVERE).   SHOWCASING AXON EXPERTISE IN THE CONTEXT OF AUTO EXPO, NEW DELHI   Auto Expo will be a good opportunity for the Axon’ group to highlight the expertise of its Indian subsidiary Axon’ Interconnectors and Wires based in Bangalore since 2010 in the area of cable assemblies for challenging environment. Space and weight saving, flexibility, temperature resistance, power transmission, EMI protection are some of the many challenges Axon’ India will have to cope with. Especially designed for the automotive market, Axon’ cable proposes Flat Flexible Cables for board-to-board interconnections, flat flex shielded cable assemblies, custom-designed electromagnetic interference protected cables and connectors, flat display connections for infotainment, PTFE wires resistant to high temperatures (-200°C/+260°C) and many others. Axon’ Interconnectors and Wires produces state of the art wire and cable harnesses using “made in axon’” micro D connectors or any type of connector available in the market.   FRENCH TECHNOLOGY “MADE IN INDIA”   India being a strategic market in terms of rapid development, it was decided to build a new plant in 2 phases: 2500 m² in 2018 and a 1500m² additional building in 2020 at Devanahalli Aerospace Park close to the international airport in Bangalore. Axon’ India employs 65 staff in 2017 expects to hire 100 people by 2021 to reach 150 staff in total at that time with a total turnover of 5 million € by 2021.       Innovation is one of the priorities of the group which invests 10% of its turnover in Research & Development. Over 200 technicians and engineers are specialized in manufacture and plating of precision conductors, plastics technologies, and electronics. The advanced Interconnect expertise of the Axon’ group allows its Indian subsidiary to produce state of the art Wires, cables and harnesses using any type of connectors available in the world or custom designed following customer needs. The company draws its experience in space and defense to offer reliable dedicated solutions in automotive industry; All sites involved in the manufacture of automotive products are ISO 9001/TS16949 certified. Axon’s 13 integrated manufacturing sites in Asia, Europe and America can handle all orders from small and medium size volumes right up to mass production.   « We want to build a long-standing company » this illustrates both history and vision of Axon’ long-term strategy, says Joseph Puzo, President and CEO of AXON’ Group     The Auto equipment manufacturers market in India is estimated to be 35 Billion € in 2015-16 representing 41% of automotive sales. India now has more than 500 suppliers and 10,000 subcontractors. Participating in the auto expo would be one step ahead for the company as the Indian equipment manufacturers and sub-contracting SMEs are looking for foreign partners (JV, technology transfer, R & D centers, equipment modernization and production lines) to overcome their technological gap, particularly in the face of BS-VI challenges, the evolution of safety standards & the electric vehicle.

“Choose France!” summit focusing on France’s attractiveness to business

Purva Marwaha - 23-janv.-2018 07:30:22
  The President of France will be attending the “Choose France!” summit at the Palace of Versailles on Monday January 22, where distinguished guests will include nearly 140 business leaders representing some the world’s biggest businesses in a wide variety of sectors, from the automotive industry to new technologies, agri-food, financial services and healthcare. The “Choose France!” summit is another key stage in the promotion of France’s attractiveness as a business location after several months of far-reaching economic reforms by the French government. The aim of the event is to highlight how France stands up as an attractive business destination, underpinned by the announcement of various investment projects in France and the presence of 140 business leaders, many of whom are on their way to the World Economic Forum in Davos (Switzerland), who will discuss their ambitions in France with the President, Prime Minister and 16 ministers. Five multinational firms will use the summit to announce major investment projects in France. Each of these will serve as a symbolic illustration – due to either their size, the sums being invested, growth or jobs being generated, or their excellence and significance for sectors of the future. A handful of smaller projects will also be announced during the event. As part of a day largely given over to France’s attractiveness to business, the President of France will also pay an early afternoon visit to Toyota’s industrial plant near Valenciennes (north-eastern France), where the Toyota Yaris is made (3.5 million units produced since opening in 2001) and 3,800 people are employed at a site driving employment in the local area. It is also the 25th largest factory in France, turning out 30% of Toyota’s total output in Europe. Following his visit to Valenciennes, the President will travel straight to the Palace of Versailles, where he is scheduled to arrive around 6pm. He will take part in several bilateral meetings, including with Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google Inc., Vasant Narasimhan, CEO of Novartis, Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP and John Chambers, formerly Executive Chairman of Cisco. The bilateral meetings will be followed by a dinner, preceded by an introductory speech from the President and a question-answer session with the invited business leaders. 1. “Choose France!” summit agenda and participants       140 business leaders from nearly 30 countries are taking part in the “Choose France!” summit, including: Sundar Pichai (Google), Sheryl Sandberg (Facebook), Dominic Barton (McKinsey), Stuart Gulliver (HSBC), Jesper Brodin (Ikea), Bill McDermott (SAP), Lloyd Blankfein (Goldman Sachs), David Abney (UPS), Guido Barilla (Barilla), Jason Chen (Acer), Alexandre Dayon (Salesforce), Warren East (Rolls Royce Plc), Michael Evans (Alibaba), Jeffrey Harmening (General Mills), Lars Fruergaard Joergensen (Novo Nordisk), Joe Kaeser (Siemens), Martin Lundsdedt (Volvo Group), Antonio Neri (Hewlett Packard), Shunichi Miyanaga (Mitsubishi), James Quincey (Coca Cola Company), Young Sohn (Samsung Electronics), Richard Liu (JD.com) and Jonas Prising (Manpower Group).   Various French business leaders will also be in attendance, including Thomas Buberl (Axa), Jean- Laurent Bonnafe (BNP Paribas), Ross McInnes (Safran) and Emmanuel Faber (Danone).   There are four parts to the schedule for the afternoon at the Palace of Versailles:       1.00pm-2.30pm: Arrival of business leaders for lunch with the French Prime Minister 2.30pm-6.00pm: Bilateral meetings and topic-based workshop sessions held in parallel: Tony Estanguet - “Paris 2024: sharing optimism!” Bruno Le Maire - “Economic reform in France” Cédric Villani - “Artificial intelligence” Mounir Mahjoubi - “Digitalization of the French economy” Muriel Penicaud: “Social transformation in France” John Chambers: “Innovation and start up ecosystem” 6.00pm: Arrival of the President of France and bilateral meetings 8.00pm: Dinner, preceded by an introductory speech from the President of France           KEY FIGURES FOR THE “CHOOSE FRANCE!” SUMMIT:       More than 30 countries represented (approx. 50% from Europe, 25% from the United States, 25% from Africa, the Middle East and Asia).   ·                 A dozen job-creating investment projects.   The President and Prime Minister of France joined by 16 ministers: Jean-Yves Le Drian (Europe and Foreign Affairs), Bruno Le Maire (Economy and Finance), Muriel Penicaud (Labour), Agnès Buzyn (Solidarity and Health), Gérald Darmanin (Government Action and Public Accounts), Florence Parly (Armed Forces), Nicole Belloubet (Justice), Françoise Nyssen (Culture), Stéphane Travert (Agriculture and Food), Elisabeth Borne (Transport), Laura Flessel (Sport), Mounir Mahjoubi (Digital Affairs), Brune Poirson (Ecological and Inclusive Transition), Delphine Geny-Stephann (Economy and Finance), Nathalie Loiseau (European Affairs) and Benjamin Griveaux (Government Spokesperson).   ·                 Around 300 bilateral meetings scheduled during the afternoon at the Palace of Versailles, between business leaders and:   Members of government. Institutional participants (French telecoms regulator ARCEP, France’s public investment bank Bpifrance, French state investment fund Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, French government Treasury Directorate DG Trésor, etc.). Meetings are also scheduled between French and foreign business leaders.  
About
Sophie Clavelier, Country Head   Welcome to the French Trade Commission Business France in India!     Our key mission is to promote trade relations between France and India. We assist French- based companies seeking potential partners and new markets in India, while helping Indian businesses to identify potential French suppliers, commercial and technical partners.   In India, our 4 offices are located in business hubs, New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai. We have a dedicated multicultural team of 38 experts in the following growing sectors: Agrofood Industry Industry and Cleantech Lifestyle and Healthcare Tech & Services Our Trade Commission also has a Press office in charge of helping French companies to communicate in India as well as a Market Access Department enabling them to better understand and adjust to the Indian regulatory and fiscal framework. In

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