The Australian uranium industry today welcomed reports that the Australia Government will conclude a safeguards agreement with India next month paving the way for the sale of uranium to one of the world’s fastest growing energy markets.
India currently only has just over 5 GW of nuclear capacity. This is expected to grow to 14.6 GW by the end of the decade and is on track for between 30-50 GW by 2035. Given that this would only be 6 per cent of India’s projected electricity supply, there is a realistic scope for upside growth.
With nearly 400 million people in India without access to electricity, Australian uranium will have an important role in lifting communities across India out of energy poverty.
This additional uranium demand will be on top of the IEA’s 2035 projections for China of between 130-210 GW of nuclear capacity, up from a mere 13 GW in 2011.
These rapidly growing markets will generate strong demand for uranium from Australia – home of more than 30 per cent of the world’s known low cost uranium reserves – and underpinning jobs and growing export revenue for Australia.
The bilateral agreement will bring India into Australia’s non-proliferation safeguards architecture which already includes amongst others the USA, Japan, South Korea, the UAE, Europe and China. These agreements ensure that Australia's nuclear exports remain in exclusively peaceful use.