Ottawa, April 15:
Turning a new chapter in its relationship with Canada, India on Wednesday clinched a multi-million-dollar deal for uranium to power its civilian nuclear programme.
India also announced visa on arrival for Canadians.
The $350-million uranium agreement, which was signed by Cameco and the Atomic Energy Commission of India in the presence of Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Stephen Harper, marked a new chapter in India’s ties with Canada, which had imposed sanctions on India after its nuclear tests.
Under the deal which runs through 2020, Cameco will supply 7.1 million pounds of uranium concentrate to India.
Welcoming the deal which has been reached after protracted talks, Modi said at a joint press conference with Harper: “The uranium deal is the mark of Canada’s trust in India.”
He said the uranium supply will help India accomplish its green energy mission.
“Clean energy is our global responsibility to humanity. Uranium is must to my mission of clean energy. This deal will help us fulfil our mission,” Modi said.
Cameco president and CEO said: “This contract opens the door to a dynamic and expanding uranium market. Much of the long-term growth we see coming in our industry will happen in India and this emerging market is key to our strategy.”
Announcing visa on arrival for Canadians, Modi said his government wants to promote people-to-people contacts between the two countries. Canadians can apply online and will be eligible for visas for 10 years.
Apart from this, a number of agreements were signed following talks between the two leaders.
These are in the areas of civil aviation and space, skill development and higher education.
In his remarks, Harper said: “Your visit indicates the strong friendship between Canada and India. This is a growing relationship. Trade potential between our countries is enormous.”
Thanking Harper for changing the course of the bilateral relationship, Modi also promised rapid progress on the proposed trade and investment agreements between the two countries.
“We will conclude the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) by September,” Modi said. (IANS)