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Pak signed 'civil nuke deal' with China ahead of US talks

March 30, 2010 10:39 IST

Pakistan has reportedly entered into a civil nuclear deal with China for setting up two nuclear power stations of 640 megawatts in Chashma.

According to sources, the deal under which Beijing would be providing Islamabad financial and technical assistance for the project was finalised ahead of the last week's first ministerial level strategic dialogue between Pakistan and the United States.

During the strategic dialogue, Washington had rejected Pakistan's demands of having an India-like civil nuclear deal.

The federal government had approved an inter-government framework agreement on the financing of 'Chashma Nuclear Power Project 3' and 'Chashma Nuclear Power Project 4' with China, The Daily Times reported.

Each 320-megawatt unit would contain a nuclear steam supply system, a turbine-generator set and the associated auxiliary equipment and installations, sources added.

Insiders said that under the deal, China would be providing 82 percent of the total 1.912 billion dollars to Pakistan as a 20-year soft loan, with an eight-year grace period.

They said that the frequent visits of President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to Beijing was particularly aimed at securing the deal.

Chasma houses a number of establishments of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, including two units of 300 megawatt nuclear reactors.
Source: ANI