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India, Kazakh embark on ambitious roadmap; ink nuke, oil pacts

April 16
02:50 2011

ASTANA: Embarking on an ambitious roadmap to consolidate their strategic partnership, India and Kazakhstan today signed seven pacts, including a framework agreement in civil nuclear field and a stake-sharing accord in oil sector, with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying there was “vast potential” for cooperation in all areas.

At wide-ranging talks between Singh and Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev, the two sides also decided to work for pushing the bilateral trade, which was currently as low as USD 300 million, through engagement of governments and business communities and diversifying to non-oil sectors like pharma, agriculture and IT.

The two leaders discussed a host of issues during their talks, which were first restricted and then delegation level, covering bilateral matters and international issues like developments in Libya and other North African countries and Afghanistan.

Summing up the talks, Singh said in a statement to the press that there was “solid and substantive outcome” that will help build on the strategic partnership forged during the visit of Nazarbaev to India in January 2009.

The two sides signed an inter-governmental agreement for Cooperation in Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy, that envisages a legal framework for supply of fuel, construction and operation of atomic power plants, exploration and joint mining of uranium, exchange of scientific and research information, reactor safety mechanisms and use of radiation technologies for healthcare.

After the talks, the Kazakh President announced that his country would supply India with 2100 tonnes of uranium and was ready to do more.

-PTI

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