NEW DELHI: The landmark Indo-Japanese civil nuclear deal signed in November 2016 came into force from Thursday that would enable Japan to export nuclear power plant technology as well as provide finance for nuclear power plants in India.

Japan would also assist India in nuclear waste management and could undertake joint manufacture of nuclear power plant components under the Make in India initiative, persons familiar with the development told ET.

Japanese PM Shinzo Abe is expected to visit India this September and growing civil nuclear ties will be highlighted as one of the key elements of Indo-Japan strategic partnership.

Japanese industrial conglomerate Toshiba — which owns Westinghouse — will have a major role when US nuclear major supplies technology for the pair of six reactors in Andhra Pradesh. Since June, this will be the third major development in India’s civil nuclear outreach beginning with pacts with Russia for Units 5 & 6 for Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant and first uranium shipment from Australia.

Last November India and Japan signed a landmark civil nuclear cooperation deal — upgrading MoU at the 2015 Annual summit. Subsequently, the Japanese government got approval from the Diet for the nuclear deal with India. The two countries had reached a broad agreement for cooperation in civil nuclear energy sector during Abe’s visit to India in December 2015. Hitachi, also from Japan, has has stakes in GE, which has also proposed to set reactors in India.

India is the only non-NPT signatory with which Japan has entered into a civil nuclear deal in what can be described as a recognition for Delhi’s impeccable non-proliferation record, said a person familiar with the matter. American nuclear major Westinghouse, which is to set up six nuclear reactors in Andhra Pradesh, will supply technology and construction will be undertaken by a relevant Indian partner. This was discussed as a way out to getting Westinghouse into India following troubles over its bankruptcy as outlined by PM Modi’s entourage during a visit to Washington. The finance for the project from the US Exim Bank remains intact and the initiative would start in 2018. Continue reading.