India and Canada have concluded negotiations on the Nuclear Cooperation Agreement (NCA) that they signed in 2010, paving the way for Canadian companies to export uranium to India.
The deal, once implemented, is expected to boost India’s plans to enhance its nuclear capacity in order to meet rising energy demands.
The agreement will end a ban on nuclear exports to India, which was implemented in 1976 after India secretly exploded its first nuclear bomb in 1974 using material from a Canadian-built reactor in India.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said his government would now promote greater trade and investment with India.
"The conclusion of the Administrative Arrangement with India will facilitate opportunities for Canadian companies to play a greater role in meeting India’s growing energy needs," Harper added.
"It is expected to generate millions of dollars in new business contacts between our countries and to create high-quality new jobs here at home."
Harper and his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh said in a joint statement, "Canada with its large and high quality reserves of uranium could become an important supplier to the Indian nuclear power programme."
Last month, the Australian state of Queensland lifted a 23-year ban on uranium exports to India, a decision experts say could pump up to $900m into the economy.
Queensland Premier Campbell Newman said the decision to overturn the ban followed strong support for the uranium industry from the Federal Labor government and Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s recent visit to Delhi to discuss the sale of uranium to India.
Image: The conclusion of a nuclear deal would allow Canadian firms to export uranium to India. Photo: courtesy of Svdmolen.