New draft proposal paves way for India to become NSG member

The US push for India to become NSG member would now have to be pursued by Trump.

The Dollar Business Bureau

A fresh draft proposal that is circulated among the member states of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) in early December could pave the path for India to become a member of this elite group, however, this is unlikely to take place before the end of Obama administration next month. 

The push from the US for India to become a member of the Group would now have to be taken over by the incoming president Donald Trump as the outgoing President Barack Obama is unlikely to fulfill the promise made to the Narendra Modi Government before its tenure ends on January 20, according to sources.

A draft formula for the membership of NSG to countries such as India and Pakistan which are not a signatory to NPT (Nuclear non-Proliferation Treaty) was put by the former Chair of NSG, Rafael Mariano Grossi, who drafted the report on behalf of the current NSG chair, South Korea. 

As per the Arms Control Association (ACA), a think-tank based in Washington that has been a severe opponent of India's membership to the NSG, the 2-page draft formula recommends ‘nine general commitments’ which non-NPT nations such as India and Pakistan have to make to get the ‘fullest’ nuclear trading privileges

Daryl G Kimball of ACA, while criticising the draft proposal, observed that this could lower the bar and pave the way for India to become a member of NSG as the country already fulfills all the given nine criteria mentioned in the draft proposal that was discussed informally by NSG members this month in Vienna.

Providing the details of nine-point criteria for non-NPT countries to become a member of NSG, ACA stated that interested states should have implemented and brought into effect a strict and clear separation of future and current civilian nuclear facilities from the non-civilian facilities in non-NPT applicants and provided and maintained a declaration to the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) that identifies all future and current civilian nuclear facilities in non-NPT applicants. 

The Dollar Business Bureau - Dec 29, 2016 12:00 IST