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Q. India’s NSG bid: Comment on the outcome of India’s recent bid for nuclear supplier group
Jun 28, 2016 Related to : GS Paper - 2

Ans :

Introduction-

Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) is a multinational body which is aimed at reducing nuclear proliferation by controlling the transfer (export) and re-transfer of materials that may be applicable to nuclear weapon development and by improving safeguards and protection on existing materials.

India’s recent bid for NSG-

In a recently concluded NSG session in Seoul (South Korea), India’s bid for NSG membership got setback due to opposition by China. Though India has managed to get support of most of NSG countries, but concern raised by China on India being non signatory of Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) has blocked India’s bid for time being. (Signing NPT is widely considered as pre-condition for NSG membership). 

Moot Points- 

  • China argues that India should follow procedure and sign the NPT or else India’s demand for NSG membership should clubbed with other non-NPT aspirants like Pakistan and issue can be discussed in general instead of India specific discussion. 
  • But considering the India’s demonstrated commitment to non-proliferation, which makes it stand apart from other non-NPT members. 
  • Many NSG member counties support India’s bid considering India’s clean track record on non-proliferation.
  • Here main cause for China is not NPT, but its geo-politics in the region. India’s access to technology will gain via membership of the NSG and other technology control regimes are main fear factors for China. 

Suggestions-

  • India must work with the current and incoming NSG chairs, Argentina and Switzerland, that both countries have publicly supported India’s bid and work-out ways to address NPT issue.
  • Similarly India should use this opportunity of procedural demand by China, to challenge China to comply international law in other areas, like the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea in its disputes over islands in the South China Sea.

Conclusion-

Membership of NSG is very important considering the energy demand that India have. India’s has very clean record on nuclear non-proliferation and because of which most of the NSG members are supporting for India’s bid. In reality China opposition is not due to procedural issue, rather it is due to India’s growing clout in the region. Though it is setback for time being, but NSG membership for India is not far away. 

 


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