India, US move forward on implementation of N-deal

India and the US are putting in place the necessary administrative arrangements for the implementation of the civil nuclear agreement signed between the two countries seven years ago, even as India and Japan have so far failed to get a similar agreement moving.

Reports quoting external affairs spokesman said India and the US are in the process of exchanging the inked copies of administrative arrangements (AA) for the nuclear deal, which is necessary for implementation of the pact.

"After the necessary internal procedures, the signed texts are currently being exchanged between India's Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and the US Department of Energy," ministry of external affairs spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin told reporters in New Delhi today.

The text of the administrative arrangement, finalised during the visit of US President Barack Obama in January this year, contains the terms and conditions for the implementation of the landmark Indo-US nuclear deal.

Even though President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi were able to announce a ''breakthrough agreement'' on 25 January this year, the administrative arrangements were yet to be signed.

While India and the US managed to resolve the issue of 'liability', according to US and Indian government officials, Japan continues to oppose the pact over the issue of 'tracking.'

Akbaruddin said, "There is no truth in this assertion... Any purported link therefore between India's AA with the US and India's negotiations with Japan is pure speculation.

He also said discussions between India and Japan on civil nuclear cooperation continue as per the direction of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe following their Summit meeting in Tokyo in September 2014.

"Also, while we value the early prospect of civil nuclear cooperation with Japan, the absence of a civil nuclear cooperation agreement with Japan is currently not an obstacle to ongoing cooperation with our other partners," he asserted.

Meanwhile, the centre organised a day-long workshop on Indian Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP) today to brief and apprise its international partners on setting up of the fund as a part of the overall risk-management scheme for liability.

GIC Re proposes to issue Nuclear Safety Bonds
General Insurance Corporation of India (GIC Re) proposes to issue Nuclear Safety Bonds to garner part of insurance capacity required for the proposed Indian Nuclear Insurance Pool.

GIC Re has floated expression of interest (EoI) to engage professional institutions to work out end to end solutions for issuance of Nuclear Safety Bonds.

Nuclear risks / perils connected with ''Hot Zone'' properties and associated third party liabilities are not covered in conventional insurance policies. Since nuclear risks are of low frequency but of high severity nature, worldwide such risks are covered by pooling arrangements, minister of state for finance in Jayant Sinha informed the Lok Sabha in a written reply today.

The proposed Indian Nuclear Insurance Pool is such a risk transfer mechanism. An in-principle approval has been received from Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) for the formation of the Indian Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP).