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Russian-Indian reactor deal

December 11, 2014

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi have announced a deal for Moscow to help New Delhi build more nuclear reactors - to Washington's chagrin.

Putin arrives in India
Image: Reuters

Modi confirmed Thursday that Russia would build at least 10 more reactors in his country as the nation stepped up efforts to expand its civilian nuclear program.

"Today, we have outlined an ambitious vision for nuclear energy; we will have the highest standards of safety in the world," Modi said after a summit meeting with Putin in New Delhi.

Putin added the two nations had also agreed to cooperate in building additional nuclear power plants for third countries.

Fellow BRICS nations to the rescue

The high-level business talks came as Russia continued to suffer from sanctions imposed by the US and the EU over its role in the Ukraine conflict. Analysts remarked the Russian leader made a point of focusing on boosting two-way trade, standing at just $10 billion (8 billion euros) a year despite strong ties between the two countries that date back to the 1950s.

India has opposed Western sanctions against Russia and looked adamant in disregarding a caution from Washington that now was not the right time to do business with Moscow.

Reuters reported that Sergey Aksyonov, the new leader of Crimea, had also arrived in India for talks on boosting trade with the Black Sea region. That news might prove another irritant before US President Barack Obama visits India next month.

hg/cjc (Reuters, dpa, AFP)

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