Ambassador of France to India Emmanuel Lenain, who is in Guwahati, interacted with the students and faculties of Cotton University on Monday.
“We want more students from India and Assam to come and study in France,” the Ambassador said while addressing the gathering at Sudmersen Hall.
“We believe in the potential of this region which is the reason behind this visit,” Lenain added.
He is on a short visit to Guwahati to interact with members of the Assam government and educational institutions to explore cooperation and collaboration in different.
“At present, around 10,000 students from India come to France to pursue higher education. We want this number to increase and by 2025 we expect that around 20000 students will come to our country,” he added.
The Ambassador, during his speech, also announced the opening of ‘Espace France’ in the Cotton University campus.
“Espace France initiative will give exposure to Assam to French culture through an online library, film screenings and other ventures of higher education between Cotton University and universities in France,” said Caroline Heubert Dutta Baruah, Professor of French at IIT-Guwahati.
She will be serving as the local coordinator of the Espace France endeavour.
“Collaboration between the French government and Cotton University will open new vistas,” said Bhabesh Chandra Goswami, vice-chancellor of Cotton University.
During an interactive session, the students of the university along with other participants discussed on a wide range of topics concerning India and France with the Ambassador.
Climate change, biodiversity issues, cross-cultural research, student and faculty exchange programmes were some of the topics discussed during the interaction.
The interaction is an attempt to strengthen ties between France and the Northeast.
France has taken a keen interest in collaborating with India in the higher education domain including research and development, innovation, student mobility, urban development, design, and sustainability among others.