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India And Russia Join Hands And Come Together For Nuclear Cooperation

During the visit by Likhachev and Ajit Kumar Mohanty, Chairman of India's Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary of its Department of Atomic Energy, a major deal was sealed. 

It was described as a crucial document which was finalised and followed by further negotiations. A bilateral meeting was held which reviewed the ongoing progress on the construction of Kundankulam, for units from 3-6. The previous units, 1 and 2, were quite satisfactory. The ways and means to expedite the ongoing construction of units 3 to 6 also formed part of the discussion.  Both the delegations also discussed strengthening ties in other areas of civil nuclear cooperation. It came to light that on the 8th of February, the two countries "signed the amendment to the Intergovernmental Agreement of 2008".


Likhachev stated the following in a publication: "India is our strategic partner. Russian-Indian cooperation in the nuclear field has deep roots; the first intergovernmental documents on Indian nuclear power plants of Russian design were signed back in the 1980s. At the end of last year, we celebrated a wonderful joint anniversary - 10 years since the first power unit of the Kudankulam NPP was connected to the power grid of the Republic of India. We continue to work on joint projects in various areas of the use of nuclear energy and are optimistic about the further expansion of cooperation."

Kudankulam is a port city in the state of Tamil Nadu and is home to two operating Russian VVER-1000 pressurised water reactors. Kudankulam 1 has been in commercial operation since 2014 and Kudankulam 2 since 2017. Four more VVER units are currently under construction in two phases: construction of units 3 and 4 began in 2017, while work on units 5 and 6 began in 2021. Two further units - Kudankulam 7 and 8, AES-2006 units with VVER-1200 reactors - have been proposed as the fourth phase of the plant. 

In December, India's Minister of External Affairs, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, and Russia's Deputy Prime Minister, Denis Manturov, sealed 3 agreements relating to Kudankulam, as well as a memorandum of understanding the cooperation in pharmaceuticals and healthcare. India also has large-scale expansion plans for nuclear energy. The Nuclear and Energy Departments of both countries look forward to working in unison for the advancement of the nuclear sector. 


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