Ambassador Emmanuel Lenain undertakes maiden visit to Uttarakhand
The Ambassador of France to India, H.E. Mr Emmanuel Lenain, undertook an official visit to Uttarakhand on 28-29 February, 2020 to enhance Indo-French cooperation in the state.
On 29 February, Ambassador Lenain called on Shri Trivendra Singh Rawat, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, to discuss ongoing and future collaborative French projects. He then joined the Chief Minister in the launch of “Child-friendly and Commuter-centric Dehradun”. This Smart City Sustainable Mobility Plan has been selected under CITIIS (City Investments To Innovate Integrate and Sustain), a programme that receives funding and technical expertise from the French Development Agency (AFD) and the European Union (EU).
On this occasion, Ambassador Lenain met Nobel Laureate Kailash Satyarthi, who delivered the keynote address for the event.
The trip was also an opportunity for Ambassador Lenain to meet Dr Vandana Shiva, founder of Navdanya in Dehradun, and Acharya Balkrishna, CEO of Patanjali, during his visit to Haridwar on 28 February, before proceeding to Rishikesh.
AFD, the French Development Agency, is an inclusive public financial institution and the main actor in France’s development policy. It makes commitments to projects that genuinely improve the everyday lives of people, in developing and emerging countries and in French overseas territories. AFD works in many sectors – energy, health, biodiversity, water, digital technologies – and supports the transition to a safer, more equitable and more sustainable world. Its action is fully in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Through its network of 85 agencies, AFD operates in 109 countries and is currently supporting over 3,600 development projects.
AFD’s other engagements in Uttarakhand include, among others: the mobilization of TRACTEBEL as consultant for feasibility studies for a floating solar project at Baur reservoir, in Udham Singh Nagar district. AFD signed an MoU for this purpose with the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), which has been appointed for the development of this project by the Uttarakhand Irrigation Department and the Uttarakhand Renewable Energy Development Agency.
CITIIS (City Investments To Innovate Integrate and Sustain) CITIIS is the main component of the ‘Program to fund Smart City projects through a Challenge Process’ launched by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) in July 2018. CITIIS aims to foster sustainable, innovative and participatory approaches to urban development challenges through a 100-million-euro investment loan from AFD and a 6-million-euro technical cooperation grant from the European Union. In 2019, 12 projects were selected to benefit from this tailored assistance package after a national call for proposals under the Smart Cities Mission.