President Emmanuel Macron highlighted France’s commitments to CDRI during his visit to India in January this year
With France being appointed as co-chair of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI), the stage is set for a strengthened collaboration between the two nations.
France took over from the US on April 22, 2024, with Aurélien Lechevallier, Director General for Global Affairs and Cultural and Economic Diplomacy, French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs being appointed to the position. India, which founded the organisation in 2019, holds the permanent co-chairship.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) welcomed France taking over as CDRI co-chair. Describing France as “an important strategic partner”, MEA Spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal on Thursday (April 25, 2024) said India looks forward to working with them within the ambit of CDRI as well.
According to Jaiswal, while the lead globally has been taken by India, a large number of countries have joined this platform. We welcome participation by all the members. “We want to strengthen this. We all know how important it is to fight climate change, the disruptions caused by climate change. And we want more international players, the global community to come forward and support us,” he stated.
Strategic Leadership Transition

The transfer of co-chair responsibilities from the United States to France within the CDRI occurs within the growing importance of Franco-Indian relations in global environmental strategies. This shift comes at a time when the need for resilient infrastructure has never been more critical, as underscored by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the 6th International Conference on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure in New Delhi on April 24, 2024.
In his address via a video message, Prime Minister Modi highlighted the crucial role of resilient infrastructure in combating the devastating impacts of natural disasters. He also emphasized the urgency of investing in robust systems that can withstand them and ensure a safer future for all.
France's engagement was highlighted during President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit to India in January this year, where commitments to CDRI were reinforced alongside other initiatives like the International Solar Alliance and the Paris Pact for People and the Planet. Under the collaborative leadership of India and France, CDRI aims to transform infrastructure systems globally. This involves not only the physical strengthening of infrastructure but also enhancing the policies and financial strategies that support such developments.
CDRI’s work, particularly in pioneering tools like the Global Infrastructure Risk Model and Resilience Index, facilitates countries in predicting and mitigating disaster impacts. These tools are crucial for long-term planning and have been central to CDRI’s mission under the joint stewardship of India and the United States, and now, France.
Another key aspect of CDRI’s influence is the focus on educating a future-ready workforce through initiatives like the Infrastructure Resilience Academic eXchange (IRAX). These programs are vital for cultivating the next generation of professionals who will continue to advance these resilience efforts.
The collaboration through CDRI not only focuses on infrastructure but also has profound implications for the environmental landscapes of both India and France.