Jaishankar Stands Firm: Chabahar Port Deal Anchors India-Iran Ties Amid US Sanction Warnings

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  • External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar staunchly defended India’s commitment to the Chabahar Port agreement with Iran.
  • The Chabahar Port, located near Iran’s border with Pakistan, has been a cornerstone of India’s foreign policy since 2016 when India entered into an agreement with Iran to develop and operate the port.
  • The US reiterated its stance on enforcing sanctions against Iran during a press briefing.
  • Jaishankar remained steadfast in his conviction that the Chabahar Port agreement serves the interests of not only India but the entire region.
  • Jaishankar’s remarks underscored India’s commitment to enhancing regional connectivity and trade facilitation through the Chabahar Port.
  • The long-term agreement signed between Indian Ports Global Limited (IPGL) and the Port & Maritime Organisation (PMO) of Iran represents a significant investment in the port’s infrastructure.
  • The agreement not only strengthens India-Iran ties but also reinforces India’s status as a key player in the geopolitics of the region.

In a resolute stance against recent US warnings, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar staunchly defended India’s commitment to the Chabahar Port agreement with Iran, emphasizing its pivotal role in regional connectivity and economic development. Addressing concerns raised by the United States about potential sanctions, Jaishankar underscored the broader significance of the Chabahar Port project during an interaction at the launch of the Bangla edition of his book ‘Why Bharat Matters’ in Kolkata.

The Chabahar Port, strategically located near Iran’s border with Pakistan, has been a cornerstone of India’s foreign policy since 2016 when India entered into an agreement with Iran to develop and operate the port. Despite initial hurdles, including changes in joint-venture partners and shifting conditions, India has persisted in its efforts to secure a long-term agreement, culminating in Monday’s historic signing ceremony.

While the United States reiterated its stance on enforcing sanctions against Iran during a press briefing on Tuesday, Jaishankar remained steadfast in his conviction that the Chabahar Port agreement serves the interests of not only India but the entire region. He pointed out that the US itself had recognized the broader relevance of the Chabahar Port in the past, indicating a degree of understanding regarding its significance.

Jaishankar’s remarks underscored India’s commitment to enhancing regional connectivity and trade facilitation through the Chabahar Port. The port serves as a vital transit point for trade with Afghanistan and landlocked Central Asian countries, offering an alternative route for Indian goods. Significant shipments of wheat and pulses have already been facilitated through Chabahar, highlighting its operational capabilities and potential for further growth.

The long-term agreement signed between Indian Ports Global Limited (IPGL) and the Port & Maritime Organisation (PMO) of Iran represents a significant investment in the port’s infrastructure. With an initial investment of $120 million by IPGL and additional financing of $250 million, the agreement underscores India’s commitment to fostering regional cooperation and economic development.

Iran’s Minister of Roads and Urban Development, Mehrdad Bazrpash, emphasized the substantial value of the contract, totaling $370 million, and hailed it as a testament to the enduring partnership between India and Iran. Jaishankar echoed these sentiments, highlighting the agreement as a catalyst for larger investments in the port’s development, further solidifying its role in regional trade and connectivity initiatives.

Despite external pressures and the specter of sanctions, India’s unwavering commitment to the Chabahar Port underscores its strategic importance in bolstering regional stability and economic prosperity. The agreement not only strengthens India-Iran ties but also reinforces India’s status as a key player in the geopolitics of the region.

In conclusion, Jaishankar’s firm stance on the Chabahar Port deal reaffirms India’s commitment to pursuing mutually beneficial projects despite external challenges. The agreement represents a significant milestone in India-Iran relations and serves as a testament to India’s proactive engagement in fostering regional connectivity and economic development.

(With inputs from agencies)

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