HomeScience & TechIndia-Iran Chabahar Port Agreement to Benefit Region, Says MEA

India-Iran Chabahar Port Agreement to Benefit Region, Says MEA

New Delhi – India has defended its long-term agreement with Iran on the Chabahar port project, emphasizing its broader regional benefits amidst warnings of potential sanctions from the United States. Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal highlighted the strategic importance of the port for enhancing connectivity and trade for landlocked Afghanistan and Central Asia.

Key Highlights

Agreement Details: India and Iran signed a 10-year agreement on Monday, ensuring Indian operations at the Chabahar port. India Ports Global Limited has been operating the port on an interim lease since 2018.

The port has been pivotal for delivering humanitarian aid to Afghanistan, including 85,000 metric tons of wheat, 200 metric tons of pulses, and 40,000 liters of pesticide Malathion.

US Perspective: While the US has warned of sanctions, it has also acknowledged the importance of the Chabahar port for humanitarian supplies to Afghanistan.

Regional Benefits: The agreement is seen as beneficial for the entire region, particularly for landlocked Afghanistan and Central Asian countries.

Randhir Jaiswal, MEA Spokesperson, said:

“India’s commitment towards the Chabahar port is to realize its potential as a connectivity hub for Afghanistan and Central Asian countries, which are landlocked. Since then, we have provided humanitarian assistance, including 85,000 metric tons of wheat, 200 metric tons of pulses, and 40,000 liters of pesticide Malathion, to Afghanistan through this port.”

Broader Implications

Strategic Importance: Located in the Sistan-Balochistan province on Iran’s southern coast, Chabahar port provides a strategic alternative for Afghanistan, enabling direct access to the Arabian Sea, bypassing Pakistan. This enhances trade and economic ties in the region.

US Warnings and Acknowledgements: Despite potential sanctions, the US has shown an understanding of the port’s significance, particularly in the context of humanitarian supplies to Afghanistan. This highlights the delicate balance between geopolitical concerns and humanitarian needs

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