Home Economics PM Modi’s Russia visit includes discussions on Russia potentially constructing six additional nuclear power units in India.

PM Modi’s Russia visit includes discussions on Russia potentially constructing six additional nuclear power units in India.

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During Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s two-day visit to Moscow, Russian state nuclear energy company Rosatom revealed plans to investigate constructing six more nuclear power units in India, emphasizing discussions on bolstering economic ties and ensuring accessible energy resources at the Kremlin.

On Tuesday, Russian state nuclear energy company Rosatom stated it was in discussions regarding the potential construction of six additional nuclear power units in India.

On the second day of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Russia, his first since the outbreak of the Ukraine war, he received a state honor upon arrival at Moscow airport. Later, he met Russian President Vladimir Putin, who hosted a private dinner. Putin expressed gratitude for Modi’s visit, saying, “You are welcome here, friend. I’m delighted to see you.” Putin then took PM Modi for a ride in his electric car around his residence, Novo-Ogaryovo. A video shared by the Russian Embassy in India captured their drive following a discussion between the two leaders.

India-Russia Nuclear Cooperation

According to top sources, Russia has largely complied with India’s request to cease recruitment of Indians as support staff for the Russian military and facilitate the return of those already serving.

PM Modi and Putin have met 16 times over the past decade, with their last in-person meeting occurring at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, in 2022.

nuclear power
Image Source: www.orfonline.org

Following his visit to Russia, PM Modi will travel to Austria, marking the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister to the country in 40 years.

India and Russia signed an agreement today to construct six additional nuclear reactors at a new site in India, following summit talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.

Rosatom, now the world’s largest nuclear reactor builder due to financial issues at Westinghouse and Areva, has a portfolio of 36 nuclear power plant projects in 12 countries, including 35 reactors in Russia with a total capacity of 28 gigawatts.

The offer includes the serial construction of Russian-designed nuclear power units at a new site in India, along with cooperation in the nuclear fuel cycle and non-power applications of nuclear technologies. Alexey Likhachev and Ajit Kumar Mohanty also reviewed progress on the joint Kudankulam Nuclear Power Project in India, featuring six 1,000 MW light-water reactors based on Russian design.

Indian nuclear industries visited the Pilot Demonstration Energy Complex (PDEC) under construction in Seversk, Tomsk region, as part of the “Proryv” strategic industry project. While discussions on land-based large nuclear power plants are common, the mention of floating nuclear power plants is noteworthy. There is increasing interest in small modular reactors (SMRs), including in India, some of which could be mounted on ships. Russia operates the world’s sole floating nuclear power plant, the Akademic Lomonosov, stationed at the Arctic port of Pevek.

During an IAEA symposium on floating nuclear power plants held in Vienna on November 14 and 15, 2023, legal experts, nuclear and maritime regulators, and industry leaders deliberated on the advantages and challenges of FNPPs and their potential role in combating climate change and achieving Net Zero goals.

According to an IAEA press release following the event, Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi stated that there is active consideration of floating nuclear power plants. Grossi emphasized the need for thorough analysis of safeguards, international legal implications, and regulatory frameworks. The release noted that while nuclear energy has been used for decades in naval ships and icebreakers, FNPPs are distinct in their ability to generate low-carbon electricity and heat for various applications, including district heating, desalination, and hydrogen production.

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