UPSC CSE – SYLLABUS: GENERAL STUDIES-2– Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s


NSG membership & India

For years, India has been trying to gain entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), a 48 member grouping that was formed in the aftermath of India’s 1974 nuclear test with the aim of ensuring non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and nuclear technology.

Membership of the NSG means:

  1. Access to technology:

It helps in access for a range of uses from medicine to building nuclear power plants for India from the NSG which is essentially a traders’ cartel. India has its own indigenously developed technology but to get its hands on state of the art technology that countries within the NSG possess, it has to become part of the group.

This can only happen if India gains access to the NSG.

Even if India today can buy power plants from the global market due to the one time NSG waiver in 2008, there are still many types of technologies India can be denied as it is outside the NSG.

Given that it is situated in an unstable and unpredictable neighbourhood India is unlikely to sign the NPT or accede to the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) that puts curbs on any further nuclear tests.

Commercialize the production of nuclear power equipment:

With access to latest technology, India can commercialize the production of nuclear power equipment.

This, in turn will boost innovation and high tech manufacturing in India and can be leveraged for economic and strategic benefits.

For example, India has signed a civil nuclear energy co-operation pact with Sri Lanka.

Currently, this entails training people in peaceful uses of nuclear energy, including use of radioisotopes, nuclear safety, radiation safety, nuclear security, radioactive waste management and nuclear and radiological disaster mitigation.

Should India get access to advanced nuclear technologies, it can start building updated versions of its own fast breeder reactor and sell it to countries such as Sri Lanka or Bangladesh.

Bangladesh is currently looking at buying Russian reactors for power generation.

Make in India programme/Atmanirbhar Bharat :

Having the ability to offer its own nuclear power plants to the world means spawning of an entire nuclear industry and related technology development. This could give the Make in India programme a big boost.

Why India couldn’t secure NSG:

What is needed:

Source: livemint.


What does the NSG membership mean for India? What are the issues in attaining it and what is the way forward?