India sends team to speed up Iran’s Chabahar Port project

India’s state-run Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust is sending a team to Iran to accelerate work on Chabahar Port with a view to facilitating New Delhi’s access to Afghanistan and Central Asia.

The team, which is travelling to Iran’s southeastern port in the coming weeks, is expected to stay there for a month to conduct technical and commercial assessment.

“We have an opportunity here, the port has a strategic location,” an unnamed official at Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust was quoted by Reuters as saying on Friday, adding, “But we also need to see the viability. There are not many ships going there at the moment. We have to make projections about traffic, [and] revenue.”

An Indian Foreign Ministry official also said, “For us, Chabahar is a strategic necessity, otherwise, we don’t have access to Afghanistan and Central Asia.”

On Monday, Indian Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh discussed opportunities for economic cooperation with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ebrahim Rahimpour.

Iran’s Chabahar Port, located 72 kilometers (44 miles) west of Pakistan’s Gwadar port, holds immense strategic and economic significance for India.

The port is already connected to the city of Zaranj in Afghanistan’s southwestern province of Nimruz and can serve as India’s entry point to Afghanistan, Central Asia and beyond.

Afghan Ambassador to New Delhi Shaida Mohammad Abdali said on November 18 that his government is eager to sign an agreement with Iran and India for the transit of commodities to Afghanistan.

He said his country is keen to ink a trilateral transit agreement with Iran and India on Chabahar Port, which is meant to provide a route for trade with landlocked Afghanistan.

By Press TV


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