Although India has relatively large reserves of thorium, its uranium reserves are more comparatively modest and of low grade. As of 1 September 2014, there were 21 operational nuclear power reactors, generating 2.25% of India's electricity. Seven more were being constructed with plans for an additional 25 more. Given India's limited reserves, it consumes all the uranium it produces from its seven operating uranium mines.

Unlike most countries in this study, India (and Pakistan) never signed or acceded to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT). This status largely excluded India from the global trade of nuclear technology and materials for more than three decades. In 2008, the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) agreed to exempt India from its requirement that recipient countries have in place comprehensive safeguards agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to cover all nuclear activities. This exemption has allowed India to conclude bilateral agreements with other countries for the supply of uranium to meet its future fuel needs. Agreements with France, Kazakhstan, and Russia have been signed, and on 5 September 2014, a nuclear deal with Australia was also signed.