Indo-Kazakh ties to strengthen with peaceful uses of nuclear energy: PMApril 15th, 2011 - 9:49 pm ICT by ANI
Astana (Kazakhstan), Apr 15(ANI): India is looking forward to continuing cooperation with Kazakhstan in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, visiting Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh said on Friday.
“The impact of conventional sources of energy on the environment and their finite quantities have stimulated us to explore alternative sources of energy as an urgent imperative. India being one of the largest global consumers of energy has also been exploring alternative sources of energy, including solar and wind power,” said Dr. Singh, who arrived in Kazakhstan capital Astana today for his first bilateral visit to the country.
“In our view, nuclear energy is an important component of our energy mix in our national strategy to meet our future energy needs. In the light of the tragedy in Japan, we have embarked on a comprehensive review of the security and safeguard procedures at our nuclear plants. We look forward to our continuing cooperation with Kazakhstan in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy,” he added.
The Prime Minister also said that the hydrocarbon sector is another strategic sector for cooperation between the two nations.
“During the visit of President Nazarbayev to India in January 2009, KazMunaiGaz company signed an agreement on transfer of 25 percent stake in the Satpayev oil block to OVL, one of our state-owned oil companies. Commercial negotiations on implementation of this agreement have been proceeding smoothly and we hope to reach an understanding during my visit to Astana,” Dr. Singh said.
“We are also keen to cooperate with Kazakhstan in construction of oil refineries and other downstream and upstream projects in the energy sector,” he added.
Dr. Singh was replying to questions by Kazakh newspapers “Kazakhstanskaya Pravda” and “Egemen Kazakhstan”.
Earlier today, it was reported that Kazakhstan has shown interest in buying small Indian nuclear reactors.
According to sources, Kazakhstan is looking for 235 MW reactors.
Sources, however, claim that it is a difficult prospect because there is large domestic demand.
They also said that India will first conduct a feasibility study.
Dr. Singh will be meeting Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev later today.
There are 20 nuclear reactors in India and the energy starved country is planning to diversify its civil nuclear programme.
Kazakhstan has large reserves of Uranium and it has been supplying nuclear fuel to India.
Kazakhstan is also key to India’s strategic and political interests, as the central Asian country would be assuming chairmanship of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC). (ANI)
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