India & World

1. What is Areva?
2. What is Nathula Reopening?
3. What is Megha-Tropiques Mission?
4. What is Scotland Saltire Scheme?
5. What are Coal India Ltd Plans in Mozambique?
6. What was India US defence deal of $2.1 Billion in January 2009?

1. What is Areva?
Areva is a French Nuclear Giant. It signed a primary deal with India in February 2009 to provide India with up to six new generation reactors — a move hailed in India as ending its nuclear isolation and transforming the country into “a responsible nuclear state.”
The deal was signed with Indian electric utility Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd. This has paved the way for technical cooperation on at least two and as many as six of Areva’s so-called EPRs, or Evolutionary Power Reactors, at the Jaitapur site in the western state of Maharashtra.
The size of the deal was estimated by rival of Areva General Electric.and was more than $30 billion.
Anil Kakodkar, Chairman of India’s Atomic Energy Commission & Prithviraj Chavan, minister in the prime minister’s office responsible for nuclear issues were the authorities from India side.

According to them this deal marked the end of India’s “nuclear isolation” and signaled its emergence as “a responsible nuclear state.”

India had concluded a nuclear deal between the United States and India earlier, which opened the way for nuclear trade between India and other nations. Previously, India had faced a nuclear trade ban since its first atomic test in 1974 amid its refusal to sign international treaties designed to limit the illicit spread of such materials. India has already inked deals with Russia to build new nuclear plants, but the deal with Areva is the first commercial agreement since India received the go-ahead from the International Atomic Energy Agency last year.

2. What is Nathula Re-Opening?
Nathu La pass is in Sikkim and is sometimes called ” Gateway of Silk Road . It was reopened in 2006 for border trade with China after 44 years’ closure. Trade in this area accounted for 80 percent of the total border trade volume between China and India in the early 1900s. Trading through the pass was suspended in 1962 after border conflicts.

3. What is Megha-Tropiques Mission?
The Megha-Tropiques Mission (MTM) is a planned mission to study the water cycle in the tropical atmosphere in the context of climate change.
It is collaborative effort between French Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
This mission was scrapped in in 2003, but later revived in 2004 when India increased its contribution and costs were lowered.With the progress made by GEWEX (Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment), MTM currently is being designed to understand tropical meteorological and climatic processes, by obtaining reliable statistics on the water and energy budget of the tropical atmosphere.MTM will complement other data in the current regional monsoon projects such as MAHASRI and the completed GAME project. [5][6] MTM also seeks to describe the evolution of major tropical weather systems. The focus will be the repetitive measurement of the tropics.

4. What is Scotland Saltire Scheme?
Scotland Saltire scheme is a new scholarship award funded by the Scottish Government managed by British Council Scotland in partnership with the higher education sector in Scotland.
The scholarship is awarded to young professionals from across the world. The ‘Saltire Scholarships 2009’ scheme has on offer 50 awards for Indian students to study for a postgraduate degree in Scotland. This scheme is part of the Scottish Government’s continuing support for the brightest and best Indian students to study in Scotland. The scheme assists overseas students to undertake 12-month master’s level courses in Scotland. The awards, each worth Rs. 1,43,000, are funded by the Scottish Government and are supplemented by contributions from Scottish universities and higher education institutions. The ‘Saltire Scholarships 2009.

5. What are Coal India Ltd Plans in Mozambique?
Coal India Ltd is a Government owned monopoly coal producer. It is planning to start exploration of two mining blocks in Mozambique that has been allotted to it joint venture within six months. CIL and Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) has set up a special purpose vehicle with each holding 28 per cent stake in the SPV for taking up mining exploration in Africa and other regions. Here, CIL, being the producer, plays the lead role in assessing the acquisition opportunities on behalf of the consortium partners.
The two coal blocks — A1 and A2 – are spread over an area of 200 square km and their exploration may take over two years. Coal India plans to export 85 per cent of the output from the Mozambique mines to India, leaving a minimum 15 per cent for local market there. Mozambique has one of the largest reserves of thermal as well as coking coal in the world and has recently offered block A1 and A2 to CIL as part of a concession agreement. Of the 2 blocks, A1 is most promising and has an estimated reserve of 1 billion tonne thermal and coking coal reserve. CIL is expected to invest Rs700 crore to Rs800 crore in developing the assets in next 5 years.

6. India US Defence deal of 2.1$ January 2009?
INDIA has signed a US$2.1 billion with US aerospace giant Boeing to buy maritime surveillance aircraft for the Indian navy in January 2009. This deal includes to buy eight P-81 long-range reconnaissance aircraft marks India’s biggest military aircraft deal with the United States.
The contract was signed on January 1, 2009 in New Delhi.
As per the deal , India will receive the first P-81 in 2013 while the remaining seven will be procured in a phased manner over the next three or four years. The contract includes lifetime maintenance support and an option for the acquisition of up to eight additional P-81 aircraft.
Earlier India and US-based Lockheed Martin signed an agreement worth 962 million dollars for the purchase of six C-130 Hercules transport planes for the Indian army.
India had also also signed a 1.5-billion euro (US$2.2 billion) deal with France’s Dassault to upgrade 51 Mirage 2000 fighter jets, which the Indian air force bought in 1985. India, the largest buyer of armaments among emerging nations after China, plans to spend 30 billion dollars until 2012 to modernise its 1.23-million-strong military, the world’s fourth largest.

1 Comment

  1. anu and swaha

    June 27, 2009 at 1:17 am


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