Indo-US nuke deal will help India use idle capacity: Minister

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Bangalore, Oct 30 (UNI) The recently inked civilian nuclear deal with th United States(US) will help India utilise the idle capacity in the nuclear plants to produce 2,700 MW of power, Union Minister of State for Commerce and Power Jairam Ramesh said today.

Speaking on the sidelines of a function at IT major Infosys here, he said the country could now produce nuclear power to its maximum capacity. It had stood at a low 1,600 MW against installed capacity of 4,100 MW, he added.

Mr Ramesh said ''Thanks to the deal, by March 2009, we would be able to utilise this idle capacity, as the nuclear fuel would start coming.'' The minister said the Government had set a target of producing 20,000 MW of nuclear power by 2020. Out of this, 10,000 MW would be produced, using indigenous natural uranium, 2,000 mw in indigenous fast breeders, using plutonium and the remaining by using imported enriched uranium.

The deal would help the country achieve its long-standing capacity upgradation of nuclear power and lessen dependence on fossil fuel, he added.

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