French govt sees Rafale India talks taking 6-9 mths

PARIS Wed Feb 1, 2012 6:24am EST

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PARIS Feb 1 (Reuters) - Talks between France and India over the sale of 126 Rafale fighter jets should be wrapped up within six to nine months, French government spokeswoman Valerie Pecresse said on Wednesday.

"We are hopeful that these exclusive talks will be concluded six to nine months from now," Pecresse told a briefing with reporters.

President Nicolas Sarkozy has hailed India's decision this week to enter into exclusive talks with France's Dassault Aviation in a $15 billion contest to supply India with warplanes, after past attempts to sell the Rafale abroad failed.

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