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Friday, Oct 18, 2019

India, Iran discuss full operationalisation of Chabahar agreement

India, Iran and Afghanistan signed the trilateral transit agreement or the Chabahar agreement in May 2016. India took over operations at the Shahid Beheshti terminal at Chabahar port in December last year through the special purpose vehicle India Ports Global.

india Updated: Sep 16, 2019 22:08 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Chabahar port is being seen as a gateway for trade by India, Iran and Afghanistan with Central Asian countries. (File photo)
Chabahar port is being seen as a gateway for trade by India, Iran and Afghanistan with Central Asian countries. (File photo)
         

Indian and Iranian officials on Monday discussed the full operationalisation of a trilateral transit agreement for using Chabahar port as an international transport and transit hub, a project that has run into problems because of US sanctions.

The issue figured in the 16th round of foreign office consultations in Tehran between an Indian delegation led by foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale and an Iranian team headed by deputy foreign minister Seyyed Abbas Araghchi, the external affairs ministry said.

India, Iran and Afghanistan signed the trilateral transit agreement or the Chabahar agreement in May 2016. India took over operations at the Shahid Beheshti terminal at Chabahar port in December last year through the special purpose vehicle India Ports Global.

However, further work on the development of the port and a railway link to Zahedan has been hit by sanctions slapped on Iran by the US.

During Monday’s consultations, India and Iran reviewed the gamut of bilateral cooperation, ongoing connectivity and infrastructure development projects, including development of Shahid Behesthi terminal at Chabahar and “full operationalisation of the trilateral transit agreement, the external affairs ministry said.

“It was agreed to maintain the momentum of mutually beneficial multifaceted bilateral cooperation and exchanges between the two sides and to hold the next round of Joint Commission Meeting at the level of external affairs minister at an early date in Iran,” the ministry said.

The next round of foreign office consultations will be held in New Delhi. Gokhale also met foreign minister Javad Zarif and Ali Akbar Velayati, senior advisor to Iran’s supreme leader.

India cut oil imports from Iran, earlier among its top three energy suppliers, after the US ended a waiver to sanctions in June.

First Published: Sep 16, 2019 22:08 IST

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