Negotiations for uranium sale to be developed in due time: Australian Energy Minister
Australian Energy Minister, Mr. Martin Ferguson, said here today that the formula for negotiations for the sale of uranium to India will be developed in due time.
The Minister was speaking at the Fourth Australia-India Roundtable, which is being organised in New Delhi by Australia India Institute, University of Melbourne, Lowy Institute for International Policy in partnership with Observer Research Foundation with support from the Public Diplomacy Division of the Ministry of External Affairs.
The Minister said having taken the "symbolic" decision on the sale of uranium to India in December last year, other negotiations will be developed in future. He noted that the India-US nuclear agreement is central to the Australian decision on the issue.
The Minister, who has started an energy dialogue with the Deputy Secretary of the Planning Commission, said energy is a primary issue in the Australia-India relations also.
The Minister called upon Indian businessmen to invest in the fast developing energy sector in Australia which is poised to become the largest exporter of LNG in the world. He said Australia will have an export capacity of 20-25 million tonnes by early next year and will reach 70-80 million tonnes, becoming the largest exporter.
He said Petronet has arrived at a long term purchase agreement with Australia for 1.5 million tonne of LNG.
"It is a good opportunity for Indian businessmen to invest in Australian energy markets," the Minister said.
The Minister said India businessmen have also good opportunity to invest in technology to reduce carbon remission from coal since fossil fuel will continue to play a major role in the next 40-50 years at least.
Australia and India can also cooperate on the renewable energy, with focus on solar and wind power, he said.
Mr Sunjoy Joshi, ORF Director, said there is a greater possibility of integrated energy market in Asia in the next 5-10 years. He said Indian businessmen are already making huge investments outside India. He pointed out the Indian investment in the US, with interests in other markets. But he noted that investments will always be market-related.
Dr. C. Raja Mohan, Distinguished Fellow, ORF, who chaired the session, said after two decades of serious political work, India and Australia are beginning to rediscover each other in a fundamental manner, trying to build on complementarities and convergences.
During the two-day Roundtable, representatives from diverse backgrounds will brain-storm over six technical sessions, namely, energy security and cooperation, strategic assessment of India-Pacific, economic overview, role of cities and states in creating external linkages, maritime security and new frameworks of governance and diplomacy.