Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, in a visit to the far-Southeastern port city of Chabahar near the border with Pakistan, reassured that the development of the port and its free trade zone will greatly contribute to the growth of trade between Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and will bring regional allies closer together.
Development of Chabahar can play a key role in development
of railway connection of Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan and help bring closer
together the Iranian allies, Zarif said upon arriving in the port city, adding
that the Foreign Ministry will make every effort to make use of the
opportunities of Chabahar.
Chabahar can help the development of the region and
neighboring countries, including Pakistan and Afghanistan, he said.
The top diplomat noted that the capacities of Chabahar can
contribute to the development, stability and security of the region.
The Iranian diplomatic chief added that development of
Chabahar free trade zone is high on the agenda of the Iranian Foreign Ministry
and foreign policy.
During his one-day stay in the Southeastern city, the
Iranian minister also visited industrial facilities and ports of Chabahar.
Last Friday, Deputy Chairman of Afghanistan’s Chamber of
Commerce and Industries (ACCI) Khanjan Alokozay announced that a big cargo of
rice from India had arrived in Chabahar port to be transported to landlocked
Afghanistan while at the same time Afghans were sending a shipment of dried
fruit to the South Asian country through the same strategic port.
“Around 500 tons of rice which were bought from India has
arrived in Chabahar this week. Exports have also started through Chabahar,”
Noting that this is the first Indian cargo sent to
Afghanistan through Chabahar, the official said in line with the plans to boost
regional connectivity, Afghanistan is ready to send its second shipment to
India via Chabahar.
Afghanistan sent its first cargo, containing 570 tons of
commodities, via the Iranian strategic port in late February, under the TIR
(Transports Internationaux Routiers) Convention that enables shipments to pass
through countries without being opened at borders.