New Delhi: India has tightened its export control norms to prevent sensitive technologies and materials falling in hands of terrorists, thus making a strong case for its membership to key multilateral export control regimes. Asserting that the new norms were more stringent than those practiced by the members of Nuclear Suppliers' Group (NSG) and Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai said these will be notified soon.
This was conveyed by Mathai during his comprehensive discussions with International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Yukiya Amano on Wednesday. Underscoring India's commitment to maintain highest export control norms, he said,"I am happy to announce that the national SCOMET list has been updated to be on par with the current NSG and MTCR lists. In some respects, our controls are more stringent than those practiced by the NSG and MTCR."
The Special Chemicals, Organisms, Materials, Equipment and Technologies or the SCOMET list either prohibits or permits under licenses the export of dual-use items and technologies. "This (update to the SCOMET list) has been agreed just a day or two ago and the notification would be out soon," Mathai said.
'Category Zero' of the list, updated by the Directorate General Foreign Trade, includes "nuclear materials, nuclear-related other materials, equipment and technology". India is actively pursuing its full membership to the leading fora of the global export controls system including the oldest multilateral bodies for export controls like the NSG, MTCR, the Australia Group, and the Wassenaar Arrangement.
Amano, who began his five-day visit to India on Monday, was shown around nuclear facilities at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre and Tarapur Atomic Power Station. "This time I wanted to meet with the policy makers and also visit the sites to discuss with the engineers, researchers and scientists in order to better understand India's activities. This is a two way dialogue. I wanted to learn more from India," he said about his visit to Mumbai.