India and Ukraine signed five agreements on Monday, which included cooperation in nuclear safety and defence sector. The agreements were signed after talks between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and visiting Ukranian President Viktor Yanukovych.
The agreement for cooperation in nuclear safety was inked between Atomic Energy Regulatory Board and the Ukranian nuclear regulator, which looks at assistance on safety guides and technical criteria for safety, decommissioning of nuclear facilities and waste management, among others. Ukraine, with its history of the Chernobyl nuclear accident, has had good experience in safety regulations related to the nuclear sector.
Further, the country has about 15 nuclear power stations of the VVER type, which India will be soon commissioning at the Koodankulam nuclear power plant. Several Ukranian-origin technicians will be working at the plant in Tamil Nadu, which is being built by the Russian Government.
Besides, the defence cooperation treaty looks at expanding military technical cooperation, including joint research and development and export to third countries. In 2009, the two countries had signed a deal for upgrading the 100 AN-32 aircraft of IAF of which 25 have already been upgraded in Ukraine while the rest would be modernised at the IAF facilities in Kanpur.
Indian naval pilots undergoing training to operate from aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov are also supposed to get training in Ukraine at its shore-based take-off and landing facilities. India also raised the issue of easing visa restrictions on Indian businessmen, professionals and students, which will help in increasing trade ties.