IAEA chief in India, to tour nuclear facilities


Amid India’s plans to ramp up nuclear energy production, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano will be touring the country’s nuclear facilities in Rajasthan.

Mr Amano, the chief of the world’s nuclear watchdog agency, is expected to meet officials of the Ministry of External Affairs and Department of Atomic Energy. He will also review the progress made on the India-US nuclear deal, which proved to be a game-changer in bringing New Delhi into the global nuclear fold.

Last year, India ratified the IAEA’ additional protocol and also brought 22 nuclear facilities, including 14 power reactors, under the agency’s safeguards. The last of two such reactors – Narora Atomic Power Plant (NAPS) units 1 and 2 – went under IAEA’s safeguards in December, 2014.

Mr Amano will visit Rajasthan Atomic Power Plant (RAPS) Unit 5 at Rawatbhata (Rajasthan), which has had a continuous run of 765 days at its full capacity of 220 MWe.

Mr Amano had also visited India in 2011 and 2013. This time, his visit comes barely days after India hosted an international conference on the Indian Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP), part of New Delhi’s outreach to allay their concerns about the country’s civil nuclear liability regime and its plan to set up a risk-management scheme for foreign companies looking to set up atomic plants in India.