India reaffirms intentions as NSG ponders

05 September 2008

[Times of India, 5 September] As the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) holds its second meeting to find a consensus on new guidelines to allow India to participate in nuclear trade, Indian external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee issued a statement affirming the country's commitment to non-proliferation goals. A favourable outcome is vital to opening the door to India's participation in international nuclear energy-related trade, and to the US-India cooperation deal that started the entire process. According to reports, Japan and China are in favour of the proposal worded by the USA, with Austria expected to agree to the deal following persuasion, and Switzerland also likely to drop its opposition. New Zealand is reportedly the final barrier to

India's waiver. The 45-member group is not expected to hold a third meeting on the issue, so an outcome is clearly expected this time.