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Modi in France: Five-year post-study work visa for Indian students, UPI agreement, and new consulate in Marseille

“Last time when I came to France, it was decided that Indian students studying in France would be given a 2-year post-study work visa. Now it has been decided that Indian students will be given a five-year post-study work visa," while speaking to the Indian community at La Seine Musicale in Paris.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his historic two-day visit to France made several announcements bringing in great benefits for India and the Indians in France. PM Modi announced that Indian students pursuing Master’s degrees in France will now be granted a five-year post-study work visa. Indian students were previously granted a two-year work visa.

PM Modi also announced the opening of a new Indian consulate in Marseille.

“Last time when I came to France, it was decided that Indian students studying in France would be given a 2-year post-study work visa. Now it has been decided that Indian students will be given a five-year post-study work visa,” while speaking to the Indian community at La Seine Musicale in Paris.

It is interesting to note that over the past three years, the number of Indian students studying in France has steadily increased. Over 6,000 people who wanted to study abroad in recent years picked France. It is estimated that around 40% of students are enrolled in master’s programmes, 21% in bachelor’s, and 39% in higher education, including PhD programmes.

Laying emphasis on connecting academicians and professionals to India, PM Modi said, “Friends, there are a lot of people in France who work in academics and research, including professors and teachers. When I encounter academics and professionals from other countries, they often ask how they may relate their knowledge, experience, and experience to India. Let me give you some good news that we have respected these teachers as well. Such friends now have it simpler to study in Indian institutions.”

PM Modi praises India’s growth in UPI

Prime Minister Modi outlined that digital infrastructure is a prominent sector bolstering the partnership between India and France. He also boasted the fact that 46% of worldwide real-time payment transactions take place in India. 

“You will be proud to learn that 46% of global online payment transaction takes in India. I urge you all (Indian diaspora in France) to visit India without any cash but only with your mobile phones having the UPI app. You can travel and stay in India without having to spend cash,” PM Modi said.

Interestingly, in the year 2022, India recorded 89.5 million digital transactions. India accounted for 46% of all real-time digital payments made globally in 2022, and its total digital payment transactions exceeded those of the other four top economies put together.

UPI in France

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a major boost to India’s ambitions in the arena of the digital economy, announced that an agreement is in place for the use of the Unified Payments System or UPI in France.

“An agreement has been made for the use of India’s UPI. It will be started from the Eiffel Tower, and now Indian tourists would be able to make payments in Rupees, through UPI, in Eiffel Tower,” PM Modi said.

It is worth recalling that in 2022, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), the regulating organization that provides UPI services, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Lyra, France’s major online payment system. The UPI payment system is already used in the UAE, Bhutan, and Nepal.

After the agreement announced by PM Modi goes into effect, Lyra Networks’ terminals and machines will accept payments made with UPI and Rupay cards from Indians, making it simpler for Indian tourists and students to pay.

On the invitation of French President Emmanuel Macron, Prime Minister Modi will attend the Bastille Day Parade as a Guest of Honour. This visit also commemorates the 25th anniversary of the India-France Strategic Partnership.

On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron bestowed the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour on PM Modi. It is the highest French honor in military or civilian orders. With this, PM Modi becomes the first Indian PM to receive this honor.

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