India, Australia to begin talks on uranium exports
NEW DELHI - Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Wednesday agreed to open negotiations to export uranium nuclear fuel to energy-hungry India after meeting her counterpart Manmohan Singh in New Delhi.
The deal, which will provide a boost for India's civilian nuclear ambitions, comes after Australia reversed its policy of refusing to sell uranium to India as it has not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
"Prime Minister Manmohan Singh welcomed the decision of the Australian government on uranium sales to India, noting that nuclear energy will play an important role in India's future energy needs," a joint statement said.
"India and Australia (will) commence negotiations on a bilateral civil nuclear cooperation agreement which, for Australia, is a prerequisite for uranium sales to other countries," it added.