Canada needs India more than India needs Canada, says newspaper Canada needs India more than India needs Canada, says paper TORONTO: A nuclear deal with India is a must to save Canada's nuclear industry, a respected Canadian daily said in Toronto ahead of Prime Minister Stephen Harper's visit to India next week. Harper will visit Mumbai, New Delhi and Amritsar during his three-day trip from November 16 - the longest by him to any country so far. In the opinion piece "Why Harper needs a nuclear deal with India'', the daily said that a nuclear accord on the lines of the Indo-US deal last year is needed to keep Canada's nuclear industry alive. Even if the deal is not signed during the visit because of ongoing negotiations, the paper says it will be signed soon "for this simple reason: Canada needs India more than India needs Canada.'' The two countries have exchanged many drafts on the proposed deal. Though Trade Minister Stockwell Day is keen to seal the deal, Canadian "striped pants set in (the ministry of) foreign affairs'' are opposed to it, the newspaper said, referring to opposition by Canadian bureaucrats. The bureaucrats accuse India of misappropriating Canadian nuclear-reactor technology supplied in the 1960s to develop its nuclear programme. But over the past two years, both countries have been attempting to improve relations, which should be close, if only because more than a million Canadians are of Indian ancestry, with only China sending more immigrants here each year, the article said. Despite the global slowdown, it said, India's economy will grow by 6 per cent this year. "With growth comes hunger for energy. India's 17 nuclear reactors provide only 2.5 per cent of the country's electricity, but that figure is expected to double within a decade,'' the newspaper said. "And there is the question of whether such an agreement would also include the sale of uranium to fuel Indian power plants. Australia, another major supplier of uranium, is resisting selling uranium to India unless it signs the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Agreement, which is unlikely, given that both India and its rival Pakistan are nuclear powers.'' Considering all these issues, the newspaper said, "the fact remains that Canada's hand is weak and India's strong. "India and China are the two big markets for nuclear energy technology, with dozens of new reactors planned or under construction.'' If Canada wants to have any hope of keeping its nuclear energy industry alive, it must reach civilian nuclear agreements with both countries, the article opined. "The world has come a long way from India as the jewel of the British Empire and the wars and incursions that left China prostrate at the hands of the great European and North American powers. "It is those powers, struggling to shake off the nagging fear that they are in decline, that now knock on India and China's door, hat in hand, asking if they can please come in,'' the newspaper wrote. Three Canadian prime ministers have visited India during the past six years. IK Gujral was the last Indian prime minister to visit Canada during his short tenure in 1997-98. Canadian ministers have made 11 visits to India over the past two and a half years, including five this year alone to boost trade between the two countries which still languishes well below $5 billion.