Indian ambassador to Iran, Gaddam Dharmendra said to ILNA news agency that Iranian oil still remains debate issues relating to ties between Tehran and New Delhi.
In an exclusive interview with ILNA, Gaddam Dharmendra refers to US waivers and said “bilateral discussions between India Prime Minister and Iran President has led to a diversification of trade exchanges. Tehran-New Delhi relations were mostly in the field of energy, and Iran exported oil to India and India exported items to Iran that were not in balance before.”
“But now regarding to new issues, we have to see what we can do about Iranian oil. India-Iran bilateral trade stands at more than $ 17 billion (2018-19). This is an increase of 25%. At present, commodities like Basmati rice, Soybean meal, black tea and cane sugar are seeing an upward trend.”
Dharmendra added that we are facing new challenge that offers an opportunity for both countries; Iran and Indian members chambers of commerce, manufacturers and traders must to explore ways to further boost trade between the two countries.
“Both Iran and India are large, developing economies with solid fundamentals. Both countries are benefiting from their respective demographic advantages. I see our economic partnership as being on a positive trajectory,” Indian ambassador confirmed.
Answering to questions about how US sanctions can affected the volume of trade between Iran and India, he said “We do not adjust our relations with Iran based on the behavior of others countries. Iran is our neighbor and we have extensive relations with Iran. We saw a rise of more than 25% in bilateral trade as compared to last year.”
“As you know, India is not part of Iran 2015 nuclear deal but India has backed a nuclear deal. We also know that the International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed that Iran has fulfilled all its obligations so far.”
Gaddam Dharmendra refers to Iran reduce its commitments to its international nuclear deal and said that it is clear that Iran has made decisions that we are aware of it, but we hope that all countries will resolve these differences peacefully by negotiation and dialogue.
Asked about how EU’s financial vehicle (Special Purpose Vehicle - SPV) can ease trade with Iran, he added “I cannot comment on this as it is a matter between Iran and the European Union. Iran and India's special financial mechanism has been active for about a year and is pleasing to both countries.”
“This mechanism enables us to meet some of Iran's basic needs, including pharmaceuticals. In fact, we have set up our SPV and we are happy about that. “
Answering to questions about release of two Iranian prisoners in India who travel with a fake passport, Indian ambassador said “We are in contact with the Iranian Foreign Ministry and the Government of India. As you say they wanted to travel to British with fake passports from India and they violate the law in India and the rest is up to Indian judiciary to decide.”
Asked about can Iran to mediate India's dispute with Pakistan over Kashmir, Dharmendra said that Kashmir tensions is internal dispute and no country has a role in this regards.