Washington: The United States has welcomed the signing by India of an international treaty governing global civil nuclear liability saying it would help promote nuclear trade between the two countries. The signing also addresses a key concern which was coming in the way of implementing the landmark India-US civil nuclear deal.
"It is a very positive step to assure that international standards apply, and US companies will have a level playing field to compete," undersecretary of state for political affairs William Burns said at a White House briefing.
India's move to sign the Convention on Supplementary Compensation (CSC) comes ahead of president Barack Obama's upcoming trip to India, Indonesia, South Korea and Japan early next month. The presidential visit to India will last three days, the longest in the itinerary.
'This is a very big deal,' Geoffrey Pyatt, state department principal deputy assistant secretary for south Asia said Wednesday at a briefing for Indian media.
'This is not the end,' he also clarified, noting that ratification of the CSC was the next step. This is a separate process that India is expected to undertake in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The signing of the CSC was a also 'very significant step' towards the 'ultimate objective' of bringing India into the mainstream of civil nuclear commerce, Pyatt said.