Tehran, New Delhi agree to sign $2b railway deals

January 12, 2018

TEHRAN- Iran and India agreed to sign railway deals worth $2 billion, Iranian Transport Minister Abbas Akhoundi announced.

In an interview with IRNA in New Delhi, the minister who visited India in a three-day trip from January 10 to 12, said in his meetings with the Indian officials three important issues have been discussed and mentioned the project of Chabahar-Zahedan railway worth $1 billion as the first one.

He said in their recent visit to Iran the Indian officials have offered their plan for financial contribution to the railway project in southeastern Iran.

The second issue was manufacturing of 200 locomotives for cargo trains which will be a significant deal between the two countries, Akhoundi said, adding that India has announced its preparedness for financing the $600 million project which is planned to be implemented in three years. Some of the locomotives will be manufactured in Iran.

Joint manufacturing of rail tracks was the third issue discussed between the two countries, the official said and explained that some part of the tracks will be purchased from India but the major part will be manufactured in Iran. 

Chabahar to present a win-win situation for both countries

In a meeting between Akhoundi and Indian Minister of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, Water Resources and River Development Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday, the Indian official said that Chabahar Port is very important for both India and Iran and offers a win-win situation to both countries, United News of India reported.

In last October, The Asian Age reported that the Indian government planned to set up a panel of secretaries on development of the Iranian southeastern port of Chabahar.

The panel would look into issues related to easing of financial terms and other contractual issues, in order to make the project more lucrative for private investors which New Delhi plans to attract for assisting in the mega scale development of the Persian Gulf nation’s major port, the report said.

Talking to the media after his talks with the Iranian minister, Gadkari termed the discussions as very fruitful and said Chabahar Port would be a growth engine for India as it opened up an alternate route for exports to Afghanistan and Russia. 

It would also open up business opportunities for investors of both India and Iran to invest in each other’s country, he said. 

The minister said the two countries have sorted out all issues pertaining to the Chabahar Port in their discussions (on Wednesday).

India-Iran Joint Business Seminar a fruitful measure

Gadkari also said the Indo-Iran Joint Business Seminar was a fruitful exercise for exploring business opportunities in the two countries. 

He expressed confidence that his meeting with Akhoundi would help to further strengthen the good relations between the two countries. 

The talks were preceded by an Indo-Iran Joint Business Seminar attended by officials and nearly a hundred delegates from the public and private sector and various trade bodies from both countries. 

The seminar focused on Chabahar Port, opportunities in the free zone and transit corridors. 

Also, Indian Minister of State for Shipping, Road Transport and Highways and Chemicals and Fertilizers Mansukh Mandaviya spoke about the initiatives taken by the government to enhance bilateral cooperation in the maritime sector. 

The business event was attended by nearly a hundred delegates from the public and private sector and various trade bodies from both countries. 

MA

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