OTTAWA – After several years of discussion, a nuclear cooperation agreement (NCA) between Canada and India is now in force.
The finalization of the agreement was announced in Ottawa on Friday morning after a recent exchange of diplomatic notes between the countries.
“The agreement with India will permit Canadian companies to reach an important new market for Canadian uranium, nuclear technology, services and equipment,” said Joe Oliver, Canada’s minister of natural resources.
The two sides initially signed the agreement in 2010.
In April 2013, it was announced the parties had completed arrangements pertaining to the NCA such as monitoring and reporting requirements.
Saskatoon-based Cameco, one of the largest uranium producers in the world, welcomed the agreement.
“The completion of the Canada-India NCA now gives us the ability to supply Canadian uranium to this important future growth market,” said Tim Gitzel, Cameco’s president and CEO.
“[This} will mean more jobs, more investment and more development here in Canada.”
Under the NCA, Canadian companies can export nuclear items for peaceful purposes to facilities in India.
India is currently the fourth largest energy consumer in the world and is expected to more than triple its electricity output over the next 25 years.
Cameco expects India to have 12 new reactors operating by 2021.
According to a government release, the Canadian nuclear industry currently supports 30,000 direct jobs in Canada, generates about $5 billion in electricity annually along with roughly $1 billion yearly in uranium exports.