“Even as China continues to vehemently oppose India’s membership to the elite 48-nation Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), New Delhi plans to continue discussions with Beijing to convince it about India’s credentials of joining the group. External Affairs Ministry’s official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said that there was no question of starting discussions in the matter afresh with China as the process was continuing bilaterally at various levels. “We never stopped our discussions with China at any level. We will continue discussions till we convince it of our credentials of joining NSG,” he said. The spokesperson said that India has independent relationship with the U.S. as well as China. However, the spokesperson,without naming China, admitted that there was only one country which had raised procedural hurdles to India’s bid to gain membership of NSG. Some other countries had raised processes related issues but they were not opposed to India’s candidature to the group. “It is just that they have a different solution as to how India should enter the group,” he said. The spokesperson said that PM Modi too, in a recent interview, said that India’s objective was to enlarge areas of convergence and reduce the areas of divergence. India has continued to impress upon China that both the countries would have to take accommodate each other’s concerns, interests and priorities. Referring to India’s MTCR membership, he said that it is expected to facilitate high technology tie-ups with Indian industry and ease access to high-tech items for our space and defence programmes. While membership of the regime would not automatically entail any preferential treatment from other MTCR partners, it would create the grounds for realignment of India in the export control policy framework of other MTCR partners. Responding to a question, External Affairs Ministry official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said that IndiaÃ¢ÂÂs space and defence R&D facilities were removed from the U.S. Entities List when the U.S recognized India as a MTCR-adherent.
“Membership of MTCR will not pose any restrictions on our national security programmes. Further, India has formal space cooperation with 35 countries including several MTCR Partners even prior to joining the MTCR. In the coming days, India can be expected to play an even bigger role as a provider of space applications to the global community,” he said. IndiaÃ¢ÂÂs engagement with the MTCR goes back to 1994 based on a common interest in contributing to international non-proliferation efforts related to weapons of mass destruction (WMD) delivery systems. “We announced our intention to adhere to the Guidelines and control list of the MTCR in July 2005 as part of the Civil Nuclear Initiative. We conveyed our formal adherence to the Guidelines and control list in September 2008. In November 2010, India expressed its interest in joining the export control regimes including MTCR. Following a period of enhanced engagement with the regime and its members, India applied for membership in June 2015. IndiaÃ¢ÂÂs formal accession to the MTCR has taken place on June 27,” the spokesperson said.”