New Delhi: The US sanctions on Iran are "not relevant" to India's Chabahar port project, Lok Sabha was told on Friday (December 10).
External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar said in reply to a question from BSP member Ritesh Pandey that India is 'not required' to have "any agreement" with the government of Afghanistan on this.
"….And, I assure you that the port is functioning and functioning back".
During the Question Hour, lawmaker Pandey wanted to know whether the US sanctions on Iran had any bearing on India's project at the Chabahar port.
He said Iran has been publicly saying that "our Chabahar port project has been miserably delayed" because of sanctions imposed by the US.
"I would like to inform the member that (his) assertion is completely inaccurate. This agreement was signed in 2016. We took possession of the terminal in 2018. We have already supplied six cranes. The terminal is fully functional," said Dr Jaishankar.
"All our agreements on the Chabahar port operations are limited to Iran. Originally, there was a trilateral agreement but that was the basis to set it up. In terms of port operations, we are not required to have any agreement with the government of Afghanistan," the Minister said.
The India-Iran Chabahar Port Development project is expected to serve as a "growth engine" to India, Iran, Afghanistan and several Central Asian countries, officials have said earlier.
Besides being strategically important, this project is also seen as a testimony to India and Iran's good and historical relationship.
This project is seen as an attempt to open up a plethora of opportunities for investors in Iran and India and work as a growth engine for other countries in the region.