More than 50 years after India's first nuclear power plant was set up in Tarapur near the financial capital Mumbai, the country has 22 atomic reactors in seven states. The construction of 10 new reactors across five states approved by the government, will boost nuclear power generation, which currently accounts for less than 4 per cent of total electricity produced in India.
While local private firms are already allowed to become junior partners in nuclear power projects, the NITI Aayog has recommended that foreign investment should also be accepted.
Foreing investors already eyeing India
The advise comes after India's Department of Atomic Energy revealed that global firms such as GE-Hitachi, Electricite de France and Rosatom among others, seek to boost nuclear power generation in the country.
The firms want to join Indian public sector companies by providing technology and services, and by becoming contractors.
In a country where a bulk of electricity still comes from coal, the partnership with foreign firms is expected to speed up nuclear power generation.
This will also be in line with the government's push to cut down dependence on fossil fuels.
Private partners needed to boost power generation
As of now, India only has two firms, the Nuclear Power Corporation of India and the Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam, generating atomic power.
NPCI has a partnership with two state-owned firms, but the Minister of State for atomic energy has called for private participation in the sector.
The recommendation will now be submitted to the Prime Minister, as India works on scaling up nuclear power generation from 6,780 megawatt to 7,000 megawatt by 2031.
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