US business hails $150 billion ‘opportunity’ in n-deal

October 2nd, 2008 - 9:16 am ICT by IANS  

Washington, Oct 2 (IANS) The US-India Business Council (USIBC) has hailed Congressional approval of the India-US civil nuclear deal, saying the “historic vote” would open a “wide vista of opportunity” worth more than $150 billion.”The benefits will be many and the impact profound, beckoning a new era in US-India relations,” said Ron Somers, president of the industry association comprised of 300 of America’s top US companies committed to a long-term partnership with India.

“By enabling US-India civil nuclear cooperation, India not only joins the international nuclear non-proliferation mainstream, but now has the opportunity to achieve energy security, while protecting the global environment,” he said.

“A massive scope for commercial opportunity between US and Indian companies will also be the result, valued at more than $150 billion over the next 30 years, spurring a revival of the nuclear power industries of both countries that will create as many as a quarter million high-tech US jobs for generations to come,” Somers said.

“Passage of today’s legislation clears the way for US companies to participate in India’s civil nuclear opportunity,” Somers, said. “This sets US-India relations on a course that will shape the democratic and economic destiny of the 21st Century.”

USIBC hailed the “historic vote ending 34 years of a ‘technology denial regime’ imposed against India, opening a wide vista of opportunity for US-India collaboration in commerce, civil nuclear research, technology transfer and nuclear fuel supply - essential inputs to power India’s dynamic, fast-growing economy.”

On the operational level, the Congressional ratification of the implementing 123 Agreement sets the parameters for US Industry participation in India’s civil nuclear build-out, but on a symbolic level represents a historic breakthrough, it said

It would shore up “a durable foundation upon which US-India relations will flourish and America’s partnership will deepen with the world’s largest free-market democracy,” the business advocacy organisation said.

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