India is set to make yet another bid to enter the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), which is likely to hold a special meeting in Vienna on November 11.
The Narendra Modi government has stepped up efforts since the NSG plenary meeting in Seoul in June to secure entry to the 48-member club. This includes meetings and interaction with China at senior levels.
Officials said India and China held threadbare discussions on Monday in an attempt to narrow down differences over India’s aspirations to become an NSG member.
They said discussions are likely to continue when National Security Advisor AK Doval meets Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi in Hyderabad on Friday. China has so far opposed India’s entry into the NSG because India is not a signatory to the Nonproliferation Treaty. But India is seeking exemption on the basis of the 2008 waivers by the NSG and its clean track record in nuclear sector.
At the NSG’s plenary session in Seoul, China had stonewalled India’s bid to get entry into the group despite support to India from the USA, Russia and France besides other key members such as Australia and Japan. The meeting in Seoul on June 23-24 had ended with an agreement pushed by Australia and Mexico that a special meeting would be held in November to discuss criteria for India’s entry.
Argentine envoy and former NSG chair Rafael Grossi was appointed point person for India and since then the senior diplomat has undertaken informal consultations to build consensus on the criteria for admission.