After six years of negotiations, the agreement was signed in Tokyo on 11 November by Indian and Japanese prime ministers, Narendra Modi and Shinzo Abe. The two leaders signed a memorandum on cooperation in December 2015.
The agreement was approved in May by the lower house of Japan’s parliament, the House of Representatives. The upper house, the House of Councillors approved the agreement last month.
The accord came into effect yesterday with the exchange of diplomatic notes in New Delhi by Kenji Hiramatsu, Japan’s ambassador to India, and Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, India’s foreign secretary.
India has been largely excluded from international trade in nuclear plant and materials for over three decades because of its position outside the comprehensive safeguards regime of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.
The accord limits cooperation to civilian purposes by forbidding India to use the technology and equipment to develop nuclear weapons, and requiring the country to accept inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency.
“This agreement is a reflection of the strategic partnership between India and Japan and will pave the way for enhanced cooperation in energy security and clean energy,” India’s ministry of external affairs said in a statement. “The agreement seeks to promote full cooperation between the two countries in the development and uses of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes on a stable, reliable and predictable basis.”