India and Pakistan could lose a combined total of $4 billion annually in international loans as a result of their nuclear tests, and U.S. officials are hopeful this sanction will deter other countries from taking the same path.

"We hope the sanctions will induce India and Pakistan to step back from the brink," said Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott, who offered details Thursday of the U.S. sanctions imposed against the two countries in response to the nuclear tests they carried out last month.Meanwhile, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms, R-N.C., ridiculed administration efforts to persuade the two nations to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty as a key component of its non-proliferation strategy.

"Getting India and Pakistan to sign the CTBT now would amount to nothing more than closing the stable door after the horses have galloped away," Helms wrote in a column for the Wall Street Journal.

"What good is a test ban if nations only join the treaty after carrying out their planned tests?" Helms asked.

In addition to joining the CTBT, the Clinton administration wants India and Pakistan to stop all further tests and refrain from testing or deploying missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.

As for sanctions, India argued Thursday that the United States and other countries were being coercive in adopting them in response to its nuclear tests.

"Coercive measures such as these interfering with the free flow of trade, investment and technology are unjustified and counterproductive," India's Foreign Office spokesman K.C. Singh said in a midnight statement timed to coincide with Talbott's comments.

Under law, the administration is required to vote against loan requests for "non-basic human needs" projects in international financial institutions from countries that engage in nuclear testing.

A U.S. analysis concluded that India on average borrows $2.5 billion each year in that category and Pakistan $1.5 billion.

The sanctions already have led to a postponement of $1.17 billion in such lending to India. No loans have been presented by Pakistan for consideration since the tests, but $25 million in International Monetary Fund assistance had been postponed for reasons unrelated to its nuclear tests.

Seven other industrialized countries have joined the United States in applying that sanction against India and Pakistan, thus ruling out the possibility that the U.S. negative vote could be overridden by other countries in these institutions.

Loan requests for basic human needs will not be affected. These include projects in such areas as education, health, low income housing and water and sewage.

According to a fact sheet made available to reporters, the United States, among other actions, also:

- Terminated or suspended bilateral foreign assistance with the exception of humanitarian aid. Projects affected include $21 million in economic development assistance and housing guarantee authority for India and $6 million to combat greenhouse gases in India. Most assistance to Pakistan had already been prohibited years ago under separate legislation.

- Halted foreign military sales, revoked licenses for the commercial sale of any item on the U.S. munitions list and suspended delivery of previously approved defense articles and services to India.