New Delhi (Sputnik) — The admission of Indian to the Ashgabat Agreement has paved the way for India's participation in the negotiations for the establishment of an international transport and transit corridor between the governments of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Sultanate of Oman, Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan. The agreement was originally signed in 2011.
Turkmenistan, as depository State of Ashgabat Agreement, informed India today that all the four founding members have consented to the Accession of India and that India’s accession to the Agreement will enter into force on 3 February 2018.— ANI (@ANI) February 1, 2018
However, it is the implementation of the agreement that is going to be the biggest challenge, according to former Indian diplomat P. Stobdan.
"It is a multimodal transport system and will help India extend its connectivity to the central Asian region. Now India needs to be serious about all these opportunities as implementation would be very challenging. India will have to alleviate itself to International standards of transport applications," Stobdan told Sputnik.
India joins Ashgabat agreement which envisages setting up of an international transport and transit corridor linking central Asia with the Persian Gulf pic.twitter.com/tyvaehF1Vy— VIF India (@vifindia) February 8, 2018
The agreement will facilitate India's ability to transport goods between Central Asia and the Persian Gulf and also help India strengthen its trade and commercial ties with the countries of both regions.
The former diplomat is also of the view that the development will lend a big impetus to India's efforts to join the TIR (Transports Internationaux Routiers).
"This is good and this was expected. This will help a lot of projects which India has launched like the Chahbar Port. It will help India's application for admission into the TIR. It was agreed upon during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Turkmenistan couple of years ago," former Indian ambassador P. Stobdan told Sputnik.
TIR is the international convention on International Transport of Goods and is a multilateral treaty that was concluded at Geneva on 14 November, 1975 to simplify and harmonize the administrative formalities of international road transport.
Uzbekistan and Pakistan have also applied for the TIR and may join soon, he added.
The views and opinions expressed by P Stobdan are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.