India considering no ceiling on investments in Iran’s Chabahar

New Delhi, Jan 9, IRNA – Iranian Ambassador to India Ali Chegini said New Delhi is determined to further expand cooperation with Iran in the strategic port of Chabahar and considers no ceiling on making investments in the southeastern Iran port city.

Briefing the Indian reporters here on Wednesday on Iran-India relations at the sideline of the visit of the Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to the country, he noted that the Indian government has adopted independent policies towards its relations with Iran.

Commenting on Iran-India ties in recent months after Washington’s re-imposition of sanctions against Tehran in November, 2018, Chegini said that Indian officials commonly belived that New Delhi should foster cooperation with Iran.

He believed this proves that there is no reluctance on the India part to enhance ties with Iran.

He went on to say that both countries are working on the mechanism which will get them closer to the common goals.

For instance, he noted, they are going to use their national currencies in oil exchange.

The envoy added that the “Indians defended their relations with us” during their talks with other states, a fact which 'deserves appreciation.”

Referring to the visit of the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to New Delhi, the ambassador hailed the warm welcome Indian officials extended to Zarif and his accompanying delegation.

According to Chegini, the economic delegation which has travelled to New Delhi with Zarif is the largest on the kind in the past decade.

Zarif and his accompanying delegation arrived in the Indian capital on January 7 to attend India-Iran Business Forum and and take part in Raisina Dialogue which a highly distinguished, annual multilateral international conference.

He further told reporters about the considerable capacities in both countries that can be used to increase the current volume of cooperation which is about 14 billion dollars.

Commenting on the tax exemptions Indian buyers of Iranian oil presently get, he said the mechanism for India to pay for oil from Iran in rupees will help the Indian importers and exporters easily increase financial cooperation with their Iranian counterparts.

After November 5 re-imposition of oil sanctions against Iran which caused worldwide criticism over Washington’s move, US President Donald Trump has granted waivers to eight countries - including India - from the sanction for six months.

About Chabahar, Chegini said that it is an important port city in southeastern Iranian province of Sistan-Baluchestan, which neighbors Pakistan and is Iran's only ocean port located by the Sea of Oman.

The facilities Iran has provided for Chabahar, as a strategic port near the Indian ports, will attract the Indian investors.

Asked to comment about the presence of the Iranian investors in Indian refineries, the envoy said that ground has been prepared for those Iranian companies that are willing to invest in petrochemical projects in India, noting that the rupee-rial payment mechanism will be used for them.

Calling for further direct interactions between Iran and India, Chegini said that the direct trade and omission of the third country in bilateral cooperation will be of benefit to both countries and have positive impact on economic relations.

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