The offer was communicated to a visiting Indian delegation to Russia, which is headed by the Atomic Energy Commission Chairman, Anil Kakodkar, on April 9, 2009.

The investments would be considered in lieu of India paying for nuclear fuel to be supplied to the Russian-built Koodankulam light water reactor units and to existing Indian pressurized heavy water reactor units which are to be fuelled by Russian firm TVEL Corporation (TVEL) under a bilateral agreement.

The enrichment centre is being established by Russia for supply of uranium to countries with nuclear energy programmes under the IAEA safeguards. Russia is establishing the project in collaboration with countries like Kazakhstan under the supervision of the nuclear watchdog at the Angarsk Electrolysis Chemical Plant in Eastern Siberia.

The Indian delegation has visited Angarsk Plant, which hosts the IUEC, and nuclear fuel supplier TVEL’s JSC Novosibirsky Chemical Concentrates Plant. The sources said, the Director of Angarsk Electrolysis Chemical Plant, Alexander Belousov, made a pitch for India to invest in the IUEC project. Belousov said that the participation by India in the project would tackle the problem of guaranteed nuclear fuel supply to ensure safe and reliable operation of the Indian nuclear sector, sources said.

The proposals about joint fundamental research were also discussed during the talks. S.K. Jain, chairman and managing director of the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited, and R. Gupta, Uranium Corporation of India Limited chief, were also part of the Indian delegation.

The enrichment centre would produce only low-enriched uranium, which cannot be diverted for building nuclear weapons. The uranium enriched to low levels can be used as fuel for nuclear power plants.