Krishna visit: India asks Australia for uranium to end energy shortages

Melbourne, Jan.19 (ANI): Visiting External Affairs Minister S.M.Krishna met Australia's Minister for Resources, Energy and Tourism, Martin Ferguson, on Wednesday, and sought Canberra's help for providing uranium to resolve India's energy demands.

Krishna is in Melbourne to attend the third round of the India-Australia Framework Dialogue with his Australian counterpart Kevin Rudd on Thursday.

His visit is aimed at expanding the ongoing bilateral relationship between both countries.

Referring to India's energy needs, Krishna said New Delhi saw Australia as a key country for ending shortages through uranium supply.

Australia, as is well known, has a consistent policy of not selling uranium to any country that is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

India, on the other hand, is of the view that with it inking civil nuclear cooperation deals with the United States, Canada and France, and securing a waiver on conditions for such cooperation from the Vienna-based Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), Australia should revisit its policy and work out a collaborative arrangement with New Delhi.

Krishna said: "India, with a kind of growth that we have been seeing in the last few years, our energy requirements are increasing by the day, and as a result of which, now we have various possibilities of collaborating with those countries who have coal, have uranium and other facilities."

He said: "So, we discussed the entire gamut of the energy requirement of India and what Australia can do in terms of helping us out of that particular issue."

Krishna is also expected to review steps taken by the Australian Government on preventing racist attacks against Indian students.

Krishna visited Australia in 2009 when the racist attacks were at their height. By Ravinder Singh Robin (ANI)

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