India has proposed the inclusion of the key Chabahar port in the mega International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) that connects Mumbai with Moscow.
Speaking at India hosted “Chabahar day” on the sidelines of the international maritime summit, India’s External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar said, “India has also proposed the inclusion of Chabahar in the INSTC route. I am hopeful that during the INSTC Coordination Council meeting, member states would agree to the expansion of the INSTC route to include the Chabahar Port and also agree on expanding the membership of this project.”
Chabahar is key to India’s connectivity towards its west, providing routes to Afghanistan and Central Asia while North-South Transport Corridor made up of rail, shipping, and road route currently passes via cities like Bandar Abbad, Bandar Anzali, Tehran in Iran, Baku in Azerbaijan and Astrakhan in Russia.
More than 10 countries are part of the corridor, with more countries keen on joining it. In fact Uzbekistan, and Afghanistan, both landlocked countries are keen on joining the connectivity project.
Uzbekistan had proposed it joining the project during the India-Uzbekistan virtual summit of last year.
Highlighting Chabahar’s role in connectivity, EAM said it “has not only emerged as a commercial transit hub for the region but also facilitated the delivery of humanitarian assistance, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic” and “part of our shared commitment towards peace, stability, and prosperity of the people of Afghanistan.”
News Source: DNA India