India and Mongolia are planning to begin formal discussions regarding trading uranium, the Indian newspaper The Telegraph reports.
Mongolia signed a crucial civil nuclear agreement with India on June 15, 2009, for supplying uranium to India. However, as The Telegraph notes, the talks between the governments have remained informal, “partly because Mongolia lacks a clear regulatory framework for the sale of minerals to other countries.”
The upcoming talks will be a formal discussion between the governments on exploring how Mongolia can export uranium that India requires for its nuclear power sector.
India had gifted Mongolia a Bhabhatron, a tele-cobalt machine used to provide radiotherapy to cancer patients, during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the country in May 2016. But the core in the machine, which emits radiation, now needs to be replaced.
“We’re going to seek that replacement,” Mongolian Ambassador to India G.Ganbold told The Telegraph.
Indian authorities have said that they see Mongolia as a potential partner in not only the nuclear sector but overall economic cooperation, as evidenced by Prime Minister Modi’s visit in 2016. India has set a target of generating 63,000 MW of nuclear power by 2032; it currently generates less than 10,000 MW and needs steady imports of uranium.
Geological indications reported in the Mongolian Red Book suggest that the nation’s uranium resources could potentially be 1.39 million tons.