India and Japan on Monday decided to accelerate negotiations on a civil nuclear deal to conclude it at an early date even as Tokyo removed six Indian space and defence-related entities from its end user list.
Affirming the importance of civil nuclear cooperation between the two countries, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe welcomed the significant progress in negotiations on the Agreement for Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy. The two leaders directed their officials to further accelerate the negotiations with a view to concluding the agreement at an early date, and strengthen the two countries' partnership in non-proliferation and nuclear safety, a joint statement issued after the bilateral talks here said.
Addressing a joint press briefing with Abe, Prime Minister Modi said, "In recent months, we have made significant progress in our negotiations on civil nuclear cooperation. Today, we have discussed this issue at length. We have reached better understanding of each other's positions through this discussion. "We have agreed to instruct our negotiators to work expeditiously to conclude the negotiations at an early date so that we can further strengthen our strategic partnership." Japanese Prime Minister Abe commended India's efforts in the field of non-proliferation including the affirmation that goods and technologies transferred from Japan would not be used for delivery systems for WMD (weapon of mass destruction).
Modi also appreciated the decision of Japan Government to remove six of India's space and defence-related entities from its Foreign End User List and said both the nations look forward to enhanced trade and collaboration in high technology.
The six companies removed from Japan's end user list can now enter into transactions involving sensitive dual-use equipment, technology and software. "Japan's decision to remove several Indian entities from the Foreign End Users List, our MoU on defence exchanges and our intention to work out an agreement for collaboration on defence technologies reflect the new level of mutual trust and commitment to deepen our strategic partnership in all dimensions," Modi said. The two Prime Ministers affirmed their commitment to work together for India to become a full member in the four international export control regimes: Nuclear Suppliers Group, Missile Technology Control Regime, Wassenaar Arrangement and Australia Group, with the aim of strengthening the international non-proliferation efforts.