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India, Russia likely to ink deal on nuke units

India, Russia are expected to ink an initial agreement on the construction of four additional nuke power plants.

india Updated: Jan 20, 2007 20:44 IST

India and Russia are expected to ink an initial agreement on the construction of four additional nuclear power plants in Tamil Nadu's Kudankulam during President Vladimir Putin's visit to New Delhi next week.

"We will provide all-round support to India in its quest for the civilian nuclear technology, including joint development of new generation reactors, supply of nuclear fuel as it is the only option to satisfy the energy requirements of its rapidly expanding economy," a top government official said in Moscow.

Moscow is already building two units of 1000 MWTe in Kudankulam.

"In a separate statement to be inked during the President's visit, Moscow and New Delhi will announce their agreement to build four more VVER 1000 units at Kudankulam," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Asserting the "independent nature" of bilateral Indo-Russia relations, which do not depend on Moscow or Delhi's relations with Washington or any other country, the Russian official, however, welcomed the Indo-US nuclear deal.

He said Indo-Russian nuclear cooperation agreement would have two parts.

"The second part would come into force after Nuclear Suppliers Group changes its guidelines on civilian nuclear cooperation with India," the official said expressing hope that it could be materialised by April next.

"We will provide all-round support to India in its quest for the civilian nuclear technology, including joint development of new generation reactors, supply of nuclear fuel as it is the only option to satisfy the energy requirements of its rapidly expanding economy," the official said.

Chief of Russia's Federal Atomic Energy Agency Sergei Kiriyenko is leaving for India ahead of President Putin's visit.

Kiriyenko will travel to Kudankulam and hold parleys with his Indian counterpart Anil Kakodkar before joining President Putin's team at the New Delhi summit.