Friday, July 1, 2016

Nuclear Supplier's Group (NSG)

Nuclear Supplier's Group (NSG)
Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) was signed in 1968 to prevent spread of nuclear materials, technology and weapons so as to develop co-operation among the nations. This treaty was signed by a total of 191 countries except India, South Sudan, Israel and Pakistan. This treaty recognized two groups of countries namely the Nuclear Weapon States (NWS) comprising US, UK ,China,France and Russia and the other being Non Nuclear Weapon States (NNWS).
As per this treaty:

  • NWS member countries had to commit for the complete nuclear disarmament
  • NNWS agreed to let go the developing or acquiring of nuclear weapons.

Reasons for India and other countries did not signed in NWS:

India and the rest of the countries dint sign this as they must dismantle all nuclear weapons and place them under international safeguards to become a NNWS member.Indian foreign policy was against this keeping in mind security concerns, for dismantling all our nuclear weapons will makes us more vulnerable if any untoward thing happens in the future.

Origin and Purpose:

NSG is a multinational body concerned with reducing nuclear proliferation by controlling the export and re-transfer of materials that may be used for development of nuclear weapons. NSG also sets global rules for international trade in nuclear energy technology. 

It was set up in 1974 as a reaction to India’s first successful nuclear tests at Pokhran (Code Name - Smiling Buddha) conducted on 18 May 1974, to stop so called misuse of nuclear material meant for peaceful purposes. 

Pokhran test,1974

Number of Members of NSG: 48 Numbers

Why is India seeking to become a member of NSG ?
  1. India wants to become a player in this international arena where nuclear commerce norms are laid.
  2. If India becomes a member it will have better international market for export as well as for import of nuclear related materials.
  3. For building nuclear reactors, for providing energy we need nuclear materials. By becoming a member of NSG we can have better access of nuclear materials .
  4. All nuclear based programmes of India is being run on indigenous technology. By becoming a member of NSG we will have access to sophisticated foreign technologies.
  5. By becoming a member India can also sell it's Indigineous technology thereby giving 'Make In India' a face-lift.
  6. Clean Energy - India is committed to reduce it's dependence on fossil fuels and scale up nuclear power production.
Why are certain countries opposing/supporting India's entry into NSG ?

India has been trying to get into NSG since 2008. While India is being backed by United States, Switzerland and Mexico for it's membership of NSG (due to commendable efforts by NaMo), it is being opposed by China, New Zealand, South Africa and Pakistan.

Recent Support for NSG Membership for India.

  • Switzerland - on 6 June 2016 during PM Modi's visit to Geneva.
  • USA - President Obama - on 8 June 2016 during PM Modi's visit to Washington DC.
  • Japan has expressed support for India's bid for membership of the NSG.
  • China didn't approve of India's membership to NSG.
  • Mexico - In June 2016, India also got crucial support from Mexico

Basis of China, New Zealand, South Africa & Pakistan's opposition:
  • A country which is a non-signatory of NPT, CTBT etc shouldn’t be given a NSG membership.

China is putting forward their arguments on the basis that if India is to be granted a seat in NSG ,then all other South Asian countries like Pakistan which were non-signatory of NPT should be granted a seat too.

Meanwhile Pakistan is opposing India's entry merely because it doesn't want India to possess high end technologies in the nuclear field. And Pakistan also fears that if India becomes a member it could prevent it from becoming a memberjust like how China is currently down voting India.

Current Status:

India could not get the membership of NSG.

India deserves NSG membership due to following:-

1. India has established itself as a responsible nuclear state

    (a) Declared a voluntary moratorium on further underground nuclear tests

    (b) Effectively acting in sense the spirit of NPT/ CTBT
    (c) Only as a minimum deterrence & pledging NFU (No First Use)
    (d) Unless faced with an attack of weapons of mass destruction

2. India’s nuclear doctrine is unique. 

    (a) It is non-offensive, non-proliferative and only for deterrence.
    (b) Prepared to accept full-scale IAEA safeguards.
  (c) Already acquired high-level expertise in the peaceful use of nuclear energy in industry,  power,  agriculture and health care.
   (d) India’s membership shall not only benefit it but also encourage civil nuclear trade globally without compromising on world peace and harmony.

Way Ahead:

1. India may have one more chance to persuade China to give up it's opposition to India’s candidature.

2. This is expected to be at the upcoming Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meeting in Tashkent to be held on9th and 10th July'2016 where both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese president Xi Jinping are expected to be present.

3. Can talk with China for NSG membership. As China is seeking membership of MTCR of which India is now a member of.

4. India can have a better face to get permanent membership of United Nations Security Council.


1. Non-Proliferation - the prevention of an increase or spread of something, especially the number of countries possessing nuclear weapons. (गैर प्रसार)

2. Adherence - sticking to, being faithful to

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