India and Canada sign cooperation agreement

29 June 2010

The prime ministers of India and Canada have signed a nuclear cooperation agreement and memoranda of understanding to cooperate in various other areas, including earth sciences and mining.

The agreements were signed on 27 June by Indian prime minister Singh, who was in Canada for the G-20 summit, and Canadian prime minister Harper.

The nuclear cooperation agreement will provide access for Canada's nuclear industry to India's expanding nuclear market. Prime Ministers Singh and Harper both committed to the ratification of the agreement and the completion of all remaining steps necessary to ensure its early implementation, underscoring the potential for mutually beneficial civil nuclear cooperation and trade.

India currently has 18 operating reactors and 16 of those are pressurised heavy water reactors (PHWRs), Atomic Energy of Canada Limited’s speciality. Early Candu reactors that were imported by India in the early 1970s before its isolation from international nuclear trade actually became models for India’s indigenous reactor designs so there is plenty of potential for technology transfer and cooperation. Canada is also one of the world’s largest uranium exporters, while India with its ambitious nuclear programme has few indigenous resources.

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