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India eyes N-deals with other EU nations

September 30, 2008 19:24 IST

After inking the first civilian nuclear agreement with France [Images], India on Tuesday assured its European partners that it plans to enter into similar pacts with them in future.

"Today we signed a bilateral agreement in this area with France and we expect to finalise agreements with other European partners too," Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] assured CEOs of major European companies while addressing the India-EU Business Summit in Paris.

Dr Singh said India has opened up its civil nuclear commerce sector for foreign collaboration.

France is the first country to open nuclear commerce with India in 34 years after the 45-member Nuclear Suppliers Group granted a waiver to New Delhi [Images] on September six.

The agreement, hailed by both New Delhi and Paris, will form the basis of wide-ranging bilateral cooperation from basic and applied research to full civil nuclear cooperation, including reactors, fuel supplies, nuclear safety, radiation and environment protection and nuclear fuel cycle management.

India, which has 17 nuclear reactors and is building five more, has plans to have around 40 reactors by 2025. India's nuclear sector is worth $100 billion.
According to FICCI General Secretary Amit Mitra, French nuclear giants like Areva, Alstorm or EDF could win Euro 20 billion worth of contracts from India within 15 years.

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