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Q. India Iran ties: Discuss the outcomes of PM Narendra Modi’s recent visit to Iran...
May 24, 2016 Related to : GS Paper-2

Ans :

Introduction-

Recently Indian Prime Minister paid two-day state visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister in the last 15 years, which came months after the lifting of international sanctions on Iran following Tehran's historic nuclear deal with the Western powers over its contentious atomic programme.

India and Iran have signed 12 agreements between two nations in the presence of India Prime Minister Modi and Iranian President Rouhani.

Key features of agreements-

  • India has pledged to invest $500 million for the development of the Chabahar port.

  • India, Iran and Afghanistan signed trilateral agreement to develop the transit and transportation corridor between three countries.

  • India and Iran decided to jointly combat terror, radicalism and cyber crime as the two strategic partners.

  • Indi and Iran jointly explore the possibility of manufacturing aluminium metal by setting up of a smelter on joint venture basis in Iran.

  • Both countries have signed MoU to establish a framework of cooperation in supporting and encouraging foreign trade and foreign investment between the two countries.

  • Cultural Exchange Program, covering areas such as culture, art, radio, TV, mass media and cinema has been extended till the year 2019.

Analysis-

  • Various agreements like cultural exchange, increasing diplomatic relations, infrastructure development and financing etc outlines the primary areas of progress between both nations.

  • The signing of the Chabahar agreement is one of the important milestones and will boost economic growth in the region. The strategically located port provides access to India to the Afghan market via a route that does not require land-based transit through Pakistan, which has poor bilateral relations with both India and Afghanistan. Even Afghan President travelled to Iran to sign the deal, shows the importance of the agreement.

  • On trade both countries resolved to improve the momentum of economic engagement by setting out to conclude a preferential trade agreement. India expressed its support for Iran’s accession to the WTO.

  • Terrorism and radicalism is another major issue of the region, both countries agreed to consult closely and regularly on combating threats of terrorism, radicalism, drug trafficking and cyber crime etc is one more important aspect.

  • Another area of focus energy cooperation, and it saw some progress during the PM’s visit. But Oil, a major Iranian export, didn’t feature too prominently on the agenda.

Conclusion-

Joint statement issued by both the leaders emphasized the primary areas of progress between both nations. The outcomes and agreements signed between India and Iran opens a new chapter in strategic partnership and shows the new momentum in relationship. The agenda and scope of partnership as really substantial and the onus now will be on both countries implement the wide-ranging agreements.


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