Vijay Anand | The Startup Guy.

Why the N’Deal is a Crucial Stepping Stone.

Posted on: July 27, 2008

Alright, If you are not an Indian, this does not in anyway relate to you. So Shoo. :)

So there are have been plenty of thoughts, talks and words shared about this N’deal. I am personally glad that we are signing it and we move one step ahead to the league where we are authorized to launch ourselves into a new territory.

There are enough talks that go on in the corridors of IIT and now that the deal in the parliament is all done, it was probably the best time to talk about it. You know, we’ve been through this before. Long time ago we signed a deal with Qualcomm to develop their CDMA technology. They pretty much used our resources, built it and sold it back to us on higher royalty. I think we’ve learnt our lesson the hard way and the folks who are advising the government on this matter are people with relevant experience. Today, thanks to such incidents, we build telecom equipment which is in par with global standards, and also we dont get into such agreements where its not equally set anymore. We needed that stepping stone.

The common reason you hear for this treaty is that we are running short of power. Just who isnt? I think if our current energy consumptions keeping rising, we most certainly will keep depleting resources. But there are plenty of options being explored, including, wind, solar and the such and I absolutely believe that if necessity is the mother of all invention, there is definitely someone with a spark out there who has an idea to solve this issue.

But really, as much as energy is at the core of all this, there are two things which are of absolute importance to this deal. For one, our knowledge in the nuclear space is very limited. If Nuclear energy is permitted, trust me, we could have put a man in mars long time ago. Our space research program would have gone a long away – not as indians, but as citizens of this world, and I think this is a splendid opportunity to look into all that. The leverage that this deal will provide us in terms of raising our knowledge standards – in the same manner that the BPO sector did for us in the IT space, will do phenomenal good for us.

Secondly, there is the core issue. Energy. Energy consumptions are high and resources are running out. But India has the largest resources of Thorium, and thorium requires the residue of Uranium reactors to be made active. Really, think about it. Once Uranium reserves are depleted, and the fossil fuels run out, we are probably going to be the largest reserve of energy. Now that’s a trump card to hold in the future. If energy consumptions are not going down anytime soon – and though as I mentioned alternate energy generations methods are coming up, we will still need reactors to power up industries and residences – we will technically hold the same power and leverage as the middle east has, for years. Add that India rising to the global level and economic power, and I think we will put the US and the Euro to the test.

But all this hinges on one level of detail. Whenever there has been a country with lots of resources, it has always been exploited. We have been there before – and lost all our gold and riches, and the entire continent of Africa went through the same for the gold, and now it will be this. The Only reason the middle eastern countries havent been through that is because of their union and we know what happens when one of them falls out of the fold. And We better get our act together, and eventually for the sake of keeping our borders safe, develop the technology that will guard us.

There has been ofcourse a concern that we possibly don’t have as many nuclear engineers as we should for all this. Well, it was pretty much a similar concern long time ago for the booming IT sector as well, and we managed that, didnt we? We’ll do that once again. The one resource we are in abundant of, is manpower, and that’s quite an asset. We can definitely use that to our advantage.

This is an absolutely positive step for us. And a good one. The only thing, we better start playing our cards carefully, cause every move matters from now on.

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8 Responses to "Why the N’Deal is a Crucial Stepping Stone."

Great post Vijay. Good to read your thoughts. There’s a typo on “trumph card”. The extra h should be obliterated nuclear style.

In as much as I agree with you that the nuclear deal is needed, and the looming energy crisis, a careful reading of the 123 and Hyde act has some crucial words which makes it impossible for us to have our own foreign policy.

One such sentence is that we cannot have an amicable foreign policy with Iran, which however we need for the gas pipeline.

There are many other instances in that agreement.

The deal is needed. An agreement in that format is not.

Shyam, Perhaps, but given the political situation associating ourselves with Iran might not be a good thing anyways. I have to look into the details to figure out the actual consequences though.

As for the Hyde act and the 123 agreement, Whats the worst scenario? We break the rules and they ban us. So? By then we’d be self sufficient anyways. Now we need to ensure we get into the security council of the UN :)

Welcome back!
Hope you enjoyed a well deserved break after Proto.

Rohit, yep. Totally! :)

[...] reading Atanu Dey on India’s Energy Challenge and Vijay Anand on Why the N-Deal is important, I was wondering if there were some interesting things being done in India regarding energy. And [...]

Nice analysis Vijay. I agree with you when you
say that we need to play our cards carefully.

At the end of the day, it’s purely a business
deal. Not many new reactors have come up in the
US in the last couple of decades and I believe
most of their firms in that sector are sitting
pretty looking towards India.

I read a recent supplement on WSJ which favored
greener options in America than the Nuclear one.
But I guess the energy needs for India are vastly
varied & we might not have many options other than going nuclear.

Thorium reactors, I am not too sure.Indian nuclear scientis ts are a dedicated lot. I have personally interacted with some of them in DAE, they certainly believe that they can do it independantly (or with our good old ally)… lefts to be seen if they manage to get some tech transferred through the deal though.

Really enjoyed your article. I think india has some really challenging times ahead to meet the demand of its people

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