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Iran-India ties poised for takeoff

Iran, India and Afghanistan may finally sign a much-delayed transit agreement, throwing open the doors for greater engagement between New Delhi and Tehran.
EDITORS' NOTE: Reuters and other foreign media are subject to Iranian restrictions on leaving the office to report, film or take pictures in Tehran.

A general view of an oil dock is seen from a ship at the port of Kalantari in the city of Chabahar, 300km (186 miles) east of the Strait of Hormuz January 17, 2012. REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi  (IRAN - Tags: SOCIETY) - RTR2WFMH

Almost a decade after Iran, India and Afghanistan agreed to develop a transit route connecting Afghanistan to Iran’s newly developing Chabahar port, the project is finally set to take off. The Afghans recently announced that the draft of the memorandum of understanding for road transit of commodities had been finalized and ready to be endorsed by all countries, perhaps as early as next month.

This development provides fresh impetus to Iran and India's bilateral relationship, which had lost considerable steam since 2005. Among other factors, economic constraints resulted from the sanctions imposed on Iran and India’s own policy realignment after its rapprochement with the United States.

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