China is well on track to firm up the sale of two more nuclear reactors to Pakistan, raising serious concern in India which has conveyed its objections at both the political and official levels in China, as well as the Nuclear Suppliers Group in the last few months.

The deal in question will constitute the first foreign sale of China’s indigenous 1,100MW nuclear reactor series called ACP 1000 which is set to be a major technological advance for Beijing, according to The Financial Express. The project, which is to be located off Karachi (KANNUP 2 and 3), is valued at about $9.6 billion.

Although there has been talk of this in the past year, concern levels rose in New Delhi after reports that the China National Nuclear Corporation Ltd had signed some initial commercial contracts with Pakistani authorities. It is reliably learnt that India raised the matter with China in the last few months at high-level official meetings and even escalated it to a political level, pointing out to the incongruity of this prospective sale with China’s own international commitments as a NPT member as well as within the NSG, reported the paper.

Further, sources said India had made it known to the Chinese side that any deepening of China’s nuclear cooperation with Pakistan had security implications for India given that Islamabad was not committed to separate its civilian programme from the military. Before taking it up with Beijing, the sources said New Delhi first red flagged the issue to its NSG interlocutors last year when nascent signs of such a conversation between China and Pakistan first emerged. However, it was only at this year’s NSG at Prague on June 13-14 that some of the members were learnt to have raised objections to China proceeding with another project with Pakistan. Matters did pick up pace on the Indian side in the following months as New Delhi brought it up in its official-level conversation with the US ahead of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Washington and then took it up at back-to-back meetings with China, the paper added.

source: Pakistan today