US Senate approves India nuclear deal

Other News Materials 2 October 2008 06:05 (UTC +04:00)

The US Senate overwhelmingly approved an agreement on Wednesday allowing the United States to sell civilian nuclear technology and material to India, green-lighting the landmark accord for President George W Bush's signature, dpa reported.

The Senate voted 86-13 on the nuclear sharing agreement, reversing more than 30 years of US policy in exchange for international inspections of India's civilian nuclear energy programme. The House of Representatives passed the measure in a 298 to 117 vote on Saturday.

Bush placed the agreement at the top of his foreign policy agenda as he prepares to leave office in January and it has emerged as the centerpiece of increasingly strong diplomatic and economic relations between the two countries.

Bush urged Congress to act quickly on the deal that could position US firms to compete for billions of dollars of contracts in India's lucrative energy sector. The Senate could be considering amendments that would send the legislation back to the House for a second approval.