US warns of sanctions for trade with Iran

US issues warning after the Chabahar Port deal between India and Iran

Chabahar_Port (Credits : Knocksense)

Washington DC (USA) – Hours after India signed an agreement to operate the Chabahar Port in Iran for 10 years, the United States has warned that “anyone” considering business deals with Tehran needs to be aware of the “potential risk of sanctions.” US State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel has said that any entity considering business deals with Iran need to be aware of the potential risk of sanctions.

Vedant Patel (Credits : Anadolu Ajansı)

“We are aware of these reports that Iran and India have signed a deal concerning the Chabahar Port, I will let the government of India speak to its own foreign policy goals vis-a-vis the Chabahar port as well as its bilateral relationship with Iran. I will just say, as it relates to the United States, US sanctions on Iran remain in place and we’ll continue to enforce them”, Patel added.

The US has imposed almost all trade sanctions on Iran. Along with that, US’ allies have also stopped helping and selling arms to Iran. The US has imposed these sanctions because of Iran’s nuclear programme, human rights abuses and support for terrorist organisations.

Chabahar Port Agreement between India and Iran !

Chabahar Port (Credits : Plutus IAS)

India and Iran signed an agreement in 2018 to build Chabahar port. On 13th May, India signed an agreement to lease the Shahid Beheshti Port in Iran’s Chabahar for 10 years. Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal went to Iran to sign this deal. India and Iran have been working on this port for two decades. Now India will have complete management of the port.

Benefits of the deal !

1. India will have direct access to Afghanistan, as well as Central Asian countries and Russia through the Chabahar port.

2. Earlier India used to trade through Pakistan’s Gwadar port, but after breaking ties with Pakistan, India was looking for an alternative route in this area. Now Chabahar deal is going to solve this problem for India.

3. The Indian establishment ‘India Ports Global Limited’ will invest $120 million (₹1,000 crore) in Chabahar port and will receive financial support of $250 million (₹2,087 crore). This would make the deal worth an estimated $37 million.

4. India has been focusing on increasing international trade for the last few years and Chabahar Port will play an important role. Through this, India will be able to trade directly with Iran, Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Central Asia and Europe.

5. India will also be able to import natural gas and oil from these countries using Chabahar port.

6. In a geopolitical context too, India will be able to keep an eye on China’s movements in the Arabian Sea due to the development of this port. Also, China is trying to develop Gwadar port in Pakistan. India’s presence at Chabahar port will help it to understand the movements of China and Pakistan at Gwadar port. The distance between the two ports is merely 70 km.

7. Chabahar was used by India last year to send 20,000 tonnes of wheat as aid to Afghanistan. It was also used to supply environmentally friendly pesticides to Iran in 2021.

Editorial Perspectives

  • This is nothing but bullying by the US. Increasing trade with Russia and Iran is solely a matter of India. The US has no right to intervene in this.
  • Owing to the most dynamic major economy like India, the US cannot impose sanctions on India ! If it does that, it will prove to be self-destructive for it.
  • India should also now announce sanctions on countries that have relations with enemy country Pakistan.
  • If the US can warn India for its own interests, then India should also demand that the US eliminate the Khalistanis taking shelter there or hand them over to India. The US should guarantee the safety of the Indian students there. Besides this, the US should also compel the neighbouring Canada to take similar actions, otherwise it must break all trade ties with Canada ! Only if the Ministry of External Affairs of India takes such a firm position, the cunning US will fall in line.