As reported, the country’s authorities have said that Uzbekistan will push ahead with a joint plan with India and Iran to promote connectivity through the Chabahar port, as part of the country’s efforts to improve and diversify access to sea routes for trade.
The three countries intend to hold the second meeting of a trilateral working group to discuss the joint use of Chabahar port on Iran’s Makran coast for trade and transit, Uzbekistan’s deputy foreign minister
Furkat Sidikov said on the sidelines of a roundtable in India on foreign policy issues.
He indicated that the recent developments in Afghanistan would not have any impact on the plans of the three countries.
“India is one of our strategic partners and this is an important project,” Sidikov said.
The first virtual meeting of the trilateral working group on the joint use of Chabahar port was held last December, and the three sides will set the date for the second meeting, he added.
Almost 80 percent of Uzbekistan’s exports and imports move through northern routes passing through Central Asian states and Russia and it would be beneficial for the country to gain access to the Persian Gulf, Bakhtiyor Mustafayev, deputy director of Uzbekistan’s state-backed International Institute for Central Asia has said.
Iran, India, and Uzbekistan held an online meeting on cooperation in Iran's Chabahar Port on December 15, 2020, during which the Uzbek side expressed willingness for cooperation in Chabahar Port’s development projects.
The meeting was jointly chaired by Iran’s Deputy Transport Minister Shahram Adamnejad, India’s secretary (shipping) Sanjeev Ranjan, and Uzbekistan’s Deputy Transport Minister D. Dehkanov.
Chabahar Port, the only Iranian ocean port, is a strategic port with unique opportunities that can attract investments from Iranian and foreign private sectors.
India currently operates one of the terminals of Chabahar port and offers loading and unloading services in the mentioned terminal.
The strategic project has been given a waiver from sanctions imposed by the U.S. on Iran.
The development of the Chabahar Port is important for the economic development of regional countries and in this regard endorsing regional agreements with neighboring countries is of significant importance for Iran so that it can increase its transit share to connect the shores of the Indian Ocean to Russia, northern Central Asia, and the Caucasus.
Source: Tehran Times