Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set for an annual summit with President Vladimir Putin during which the two sides will sign a host of agreements, with all eyes on a deal to build with Russia’s help the last two units of India’s largest nuclear power plant.
According to PTI news report, With hours to go before the summit, Indian officials said that last-minute talks are taking place to iron out details and language of the agreement on a line of credit for building Unit 5 and 6 of the Kundankulam nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu. “The agreement remains work in progress,” the source said.
The reactors are being built by India’s Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) and Russia’s Atomstroyexport company, a subsidiary of Rosatom, the regulatory body of the Russian nuclear complex.
The two sides are expected to ink 12 agreements in wide- ranging sectors, including in science and technology, railways, cultural exchanges and other business areas between private parties also, in addition to a “vision statement” that the two leaders will release.
The nuclear deal, if signed, would be the centerpiece of the summit, the second time in eight months after their last bilateral in Goa in October 2016.
If signed, the two units of the plant, with capacity to of the plant, with capacity to produce 1000 MW of electricity each, will significantly boost the country’s nuclear power generation.
In October 2015, a joint statement between Modi and Putin promised the signing of a General Framework Agreement on the nuclear units by December 2016. After an inter-ministerial group cleared the project, it was sent to the Prime Minister’s Office for approval. But, sources said, the Credit Protocol, or a line of credit that Russia was to provide, proved to be a hurdle.