BEIJING: China on Thursday asserted its opposition to India’s membership bid to the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), saying there is no change in its stand and efforts were on to forge “consensus” among the 48-member elite nuclear club about the admission of new members.
“China’s position on this remains unchanged,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told media here responding to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov’s remarks in New Delhi yesterday that Moscow was speaking to China for India’s membership into the NSG.
“China supports the NSG to follow the principle of consensus through consultation through transparent and fair intergovernmental process to deal with this issue,” Geng said.
China, a key member of the NSG, has been stridently opposing India’s bid primarily on the grounds that New Delhi is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Its opposition has made India’s entry into the group difficult as the NSG works on the principle of consensus. China’s repeated stonewalling of India’s membership bid in the NSG has become a major stumbling block in bilateral relations.
After India’s application for entry into the elite group which controls nuclear trade, Pakistan, China’s all-weather ally, too had applied with the tacit backing of Beijing.