South Korea, India to ink nuclear cooperation pact

S Korea and India are set to sign a nuclear power cooperation pact in the first half of this year.

Last Updated: Jan 12, 2011, 18:53 PM IST

Seoul: South Korea and India are set to
sign a nuclear power cooperation pact in the first half of
this year, allowing Korean firms to tap India`s multi-billion
dollar atomic power plant market, the government said on Wednesday.

"The nuclear cooperation pact will help South Korean
firms participate in atomic power plant construction projects
in India," Yonhap news agency quoted an unnamed South Korean
trade ministry official as saying.

India and South Korea had agreed to commence
negotiations on forging a nuclear energy cooperation pact in
June last year during the visit here by External Affairs
Minister S M Krishna.

Krishna, who co-chaired the 6th meeting of India-ROK
Joint Commission along with his Korean counterpart Yu Myung-
Hwan, had agreed to launch negotiations for the conclusion of
an Inter-Governmental Agreement on Peaceful Uses of Nuclear
Energy.

"Noting that the two sides had already exchanged
drafts of an Inter-Governmental Agreement on Peaceful Uses of
Nuclear Energy, the two ministers agreed to launch
negotiations between the two countries, at an early date, for
the conclusion of such an agreement," an official statement
had said in June last year.

In 2009, a South Korean-led consortium won a USD 18.6
billion project to build four atomic power plants in the
United Arab Emirates, one of the biggest contracts that the
country has ever won from overseas.

South Korea has 20 power-generating nuclear reactors
and produces about 40 per cent of its electricity from atomic
power. The country plans to build 12 more reactors by 2022.

India now has 17 power-generating reactors and
reportedly plans to build 50 more by 2030, the Yonhap report
said.

PTI