India signs Ashgabat Agreement; trade and commerce to gain

India signed the Ashgabat agreement to aim at strengthening the relationship with Central Asian and the Persian Gulf. Moreover, the point in the agreement is the idea of constructing an international transport and transit corridor. It will eventually help India be connected with Central Asia and the Persian Gulf through it. Trade and investment ties also will get an impetus by the agreement.

The admit to Agreement on the Establishment of an International Transport and Transit Corridor between Iran, Oman, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan comes ahead of the PM’s Oman trip and hosting of Iranian President. The external affairs ministry informed of the members consenting to India’s accession. At the same time, an official statement made by the ministry said,

“Turkmenistan, as depository State of Ashgabat Agreement, informed India today that all the four founding members have consented to the accession of India (to the agreement).”

The accession to the agreement came into force from Saturday, February 2nd. India deposited the instrument of accession with Turkmenistan in April 2016 after approval of the Union Cabinet. Iran, Oman, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan are the founding members of the agreement. As a matter of fact, they had originally signed the agreement on April 25, 2011. In October 2016, Pakistan had formally joined the project. Kazakhstan is also a party to the agreement.

ANI reported, “Upon receipt of approval of the Union Cabinet for India’s accession to the Ashgabat Agreement, India had deposited the Instrument of Accession with Turkmenistan in April 2016.”

India’s accession to the agreement is a hint at diversification of connectivity options that India has with central Asia. In that manner, a trade route will have a positive influence on India’s trade and commerce.