Insurance pool set up to cover nuke liability

Insurance pool set up to cover nuke liability

The pool is worth Rs 1,500 crore

Insurance pool set up to cover nuke liability

India on Saturday announced the formation of the nuclear insurance pool, the absence of which had virtually stalled the growth of the country’s atomic power sector.

The insurance pool worth Rs 1,500 crore, formed by General Insurance Corporation of India and 11 other non-life insurers, also fulfils the legal requirements as mandated by the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage (CLND) law.

The lack of clarity on the insurance pool had driven away suppliers – both domestic and foreign – from the Indian nuclear power sector and stalled new projects. “Why only new projects, we were not getting spares for our existing reactors,” Ratan Kumar Sinha, chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, told Deccan Herald.

The insurance pool would be used to make immediate compensation payouts in case of a nuclear accident as mandated in the CLND law, Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office Jitendra Singh said, after announcing the launch of the insurance pool.

“This covers the entire nuclear sector in the country and not one particular project,” the minister added.

The immediate beneficiary of the nuclear insurance pool will be the Gorakhpur Haryana Anu Vidyut Yojana (GHAVY) under which two indigenously-developed Pressurised Heavy Water Reactors of 700 MW each are being built.

“The newly-launched nuclear insurance pool will help the GHAVY project that was stalled as the tenders were not getting matured,” Singh said.
The insurance pool also makes it clear that Indian nuclear facilities would not be subject to examination by foreign inspectors representing insurance companies.

The stringent provisions of the CLND law making suppliers of nuclear equipment liable for payment of compensation in case of an accident had put India’s civil nuclear cooperation with the US and other countries in deep freeze.

“The insurance pool addresses the concerns of most of our suppliers. The pool clears a major obstacle in the nuclear sector,” Kailash Chandra Purohit, chairman and managing director of the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited, told Deccan Herald. Besides GIC, New India Assurance, Oriental Insurance, National Insurance, United India Insurance, ICICI Lombard General Insurance, Tata AIG General, Reliance General Insurance, Chola MS General Insurance, IFFCO Tokio General Insurance, SBI General and Universal Sompo General are part of the pool. Nuclear Risk Insurers, London, have provided re-insurance support.


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