Australia PM calls to lift ban on India uranium sales

By REUTERS
November 14, 2011 23:40

 
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SYDNEY - Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard wants to overturn a ban on sales of uranium to India, removing a diplomatic thorn that has strained relations between the two countries.

Australia has refused to sell nuclear material to India because it has not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, but Gillard's ruling Labor party will debate lifting the ban at its conference next month.

"It is time for Labor to modernize our platform and enable us to strengthen our connection with dynamic, democratic India," Gillard said in a column in The Sydney Morning Herald newspaper.

India has long complained about Australia's uranium policy as it seeks access to nuclear supplies for its booming electricity sector and growing economy. Australia expects India to build five new nuclear reactors by 2016.

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