External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar discusses the usage of the Chabahar Port in Iran to bridge connectivity barriers between India and Armenia.
Due to the lack of connectivity between India and Armenia, S Jaishankar suggests that Chabahar Port should also be included in the North-South Transport (INSTC).
At a press event, EAM Jaishankar brought to light the hindrance caused by the lack of land and air connectivity and how it has been affecting people-to-people contacts and economic exchanges.
"Both India and Armenia are members of the International North-South Transport Corridor, which has the potential to bridge the connectivity barrier. Minister Mirzoyan and I discussed the interest which Armenia has shown in the utilization of Chabahar port in Iran which is being developed by India. We have also proposed that Chabahar port be included in the INSTC framework," he said.
Iran and India had signed an agreement worth $65 million to develop the Chabahar Port in 2018. The port is said to be an alternative route for trade between India and Afghanistan.
The usage of the Chabahar Port could increase the trading ties between India, Afghanistan, and Iran.
Both Jaishankar and the Armenian Priminister Nikol Pashinyan met on Wednesday and agreed to develop practical cooperation between the two countries.
Later, Jaishankar expressed that the meeting with his Armenian counterpart, Ararat Mirzoyan, had been fruitful. The discussions involved bilateral relations, regional and multilateral issues.
"The minister said both sides agreed that while bilateral relations have expanded in political and cultural fields and there is scope for further strengthening our economic and commercial cooperation, in particular tourism, hospitality, infrastructure, and investment," reports Zee5.
Both the parties also agreed to help boost the business community, the chambers, and the trade bodies on each of their ends to promote engagement.
"An Indian business delegation had visited Armenia last month to participate in the 20th edition of Armenia Expo. This was the first business delegation to Armenia after the COVID pandemic and I am confident that there will be more frequent visits which will give further impetus to bilateral trade and commerce."
The minister also acknowledged the important bridge between India and Armenia today is the presence of a large number of Indian students (approx 3000) who are pursuing medical education in Armenia, says Zee5.
"We greatly appreciate the efforts of the Government of Armenia and the people of Armenia for the welfare of the Indian community, in particular, the students during the pandemic and for facilitating their return under the Vande Bharat Mission."