The United States has flatly denied it had discussed the possibility of civil nuclear energy cooperation with Pakistan, but said it was supportive of Islamabad's efforts with its energy problems.
"We'd seen those rumours, but I can confirm there was no discussion of civilian nuclear technology," State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell told reporters Wednesday when asked about such reports from Islamabad citing official source.
"For further discussions, I'd direct you to the Government of Pakistan and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), which is a government agency on our side. But there was no discussion of civil nuclear technology," he said.
Asked if the US was considering that (nuclear energy) as an option to address Pakistan's energy situation, Ventrell repeated: "Again, I confirm - can confirm there was no discussion of it here.”
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said at a briefing in Islamabad on Tuesday that Pakistan and the US had agreed in principle to continue dialogue on cooperation in civil nuclear technology.
Dar made these remarks after a meeting with the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation president Elizabeth Littlefield.
State Department, spokesman Patrick Ventrell welcomed Pakistan’s interest in buying electricity from India, saying that “anything that improves relations between India and Pakistan is a good thing” and it includes (cooperation) in the energy sector as well.
Pakistan has been urging the United States for some time to conclude a deal for civil nuclear technology similar to the one finalised with India. Washington, however, has been reluctant to do so due to concerns linked to the proliferation.