New Delhi: Government has finalised the much-awaited rules of the Nuclear Liability Law. The implementation could pave way for expansion of the atomic power sector by procuring equipments from foreign suppliers.

"A PMO committee has approved the rules of implementation of the Civil Nuclear Liability Law. We will notify the rules within month," V Narayanasamy, Minister of State in the PMO told reporters here.

The Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage law, passed by Parliament last year, allows the operator of a nuclear plant to seek damages from the supplier in case the nuclear incident occurs due to supply of equipment with latent and patent defects or sub-standard services.

The suppliers' liability aspect is built into the Indian law through the operator's 'right of recourse' incorporated in Article 17 (a, b and c), which has not been favourably accepted by a section of equipment suppliers and analysts.

 "Sooner the better," said Arthur de Montalembert, Chairman and Managing Director of Areva India in reply to a question about when he expected the notification of the rules.

Areva, together with Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), is building two 1650 MW nuclear power reactors at Jaitapur in Maharashtra.

 Areva had signed the early works contract with NPCIL last year for the Jaitapur project and was awaiting the notification of rules of implementation of the liability law.

Once the rules are notified, foreign suppliers like Areva can go ahead and sign the commercial contract with NPCIL for the Jaitapur project.

(Agencies)