Tehran, December 31 (Tehran Times): The deputy head of Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization (PMO) for ports and economic affairs has said that the trilateral agreement between Iran, India and Afghanistan on transit of goods via Iran’s southeastern port of Chabahar will be officially implemented on February 26, 2019.
The official portal of the Transport Ministry quoted Mohammad-Ali Hassanzadeh as saying in an interview to a state-TV on Saturday as saying that the agreement’s implementation requires attraction of businessmen and the launching of direct shipping lines between Chabahar and India’s ports, as well as other ports in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman.
“The implementation started a week ago. Some cargo had transited from India to Afghanistan before that. About 10 ships carrying wheat and beans, weighing 120,000 tons, had been transported from India to Afghanistan,” Hassanzadeh said.
On October 23, Iran, India and Afghanistan inked an agreement on transit of goods via Chabahar.
The agreement was signed in Tehran by Mohammad Rastad, the head of PMO, T.S. Tirumurti, Secretary of Economic Relations in India’s Ministry of External Affairs, and Imam Mohammad Warymoch, Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister of Transport, during the first meeting of the coordination council.
India, Iran and Afghanistan signed a trilateral transit agreement in Tehran in May 2016, which allows them to connect each other through Chabahar Port, bypassing Pakistan.
Through Chabahar Port, India can bypass Pakistan and transport goods to Afghanistan and Central Asia, while Afghanistan can get linked to India via sea.
The document was signed in the presence of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.
(The featured picture at the top shows the Chabahar port in Iran)