India creates "corridor" in Central Asia

India creates "corridor" in Central Asia

Arzu Naghiyev, Trend expert

India ranks sixth in the world for imports of hydrocarbons. Market sales of natural gas in India is growing diligently.

A structure consisting of specialized experts was created in the Indian Foreign Service in order to India participate as an indispensable partner in joint projects with the countries of Central Asia and Caucasus countries, and to study this activity.

It is necessary to build a pipeline for the systematic supply of hydrocarbons from Central Asia to India. The construction of the so-called "project of the century" Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) worth $4.5 billion would help to strengthen political relations between the three countries.

With regard to the security, Pakistan wants to see India in the project, despite the problems which can occur on the territory of Afghanistan, and wants to improve the pipeline's profitability by expanding it. India in turn tries to limit Pakistan's participation in energy projects in Central and South Asia, as well as weaken its overall impact.

The main obstacle for trade and economic cooperation between India and Central Asian countries is the lack of direct transport links and common borders.

It is planned to build railway and highway Zaranzh (Afghanistan) - Chaabahar (the port city of Iran) in accordance with the agreement with Uzbekistan, and the main goal is to ensure that India and Uzbekistan, respectively, had access to them. The road can be reduced to 1500 kilometers in this case, which will facilitate the transportation of Iranian oil to India. One of the interesting facts is that between New Delhi and Tehran have reached an agreement on payment for Iranian oil in rupees.

Iran can spend Indian currency only for the purchase of Indian goods, as well as to attract Indian companies to implement large projects in its territory. As an example of such projects can be the construction of the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline and participation in projects to develop Pars and South Pars gas fields.

While cooperating with Central Asian countries, India tries to create a "corridor" and a way to supply its goods to the Russian Federation, CIS countries and Europe.

Moreover, the agreement on cooperation in the field of biotechnologies "Russia-India-China", petrochemical and pharmaceutical sectors, transport infrastructure, as well as energy sector was reached within the economic cooperation. The Central Asian countries have also played an important role in these large projects.
Moreover, the Indian company "Jagson Oil Ltd" invested $1 million in the Kyrgyzstan economy. Indian investors built six small filling stations. Today, the negotiations on India's joining the Kazakhstan-Russia project are underway in connection with the development of "Kurmangazı" oil field in the Caspian Sea. India intends to invest $1.5 billion in this project proposed for 30 years (profit can be obtained within 7 - 10 years), ONGC-Videsh Ltd. owns 15 percent stake in the "Alibekmola" project and 10 percent in "Kurmangazı" project.

India has declared about its readiness to invest in Uzbekistan's oil and gas industry. It has already invested in some areas of gas processing industry of the country.
Delhi achieved participation in the modernization of the Aini air base in Dushanbe on the basis of a tripartite agreement between India, Russia and Tajikistan. Humanitarian assistance is supplied to Afghanistan from this base. Using this, Delhi also got the opportunity to control the situation on the Tajik-Afghan border with a length of 1,200 kilometers and achieved that it can monitor Pakistan's activity on the Pakistan-Afghan border.

India's independent participation in the foreign market is complicated and becomes ineffective. Taking this into account, the Indian Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Industrialists together with the Turkish Council of Foreign Economic Relations with the participation of more than 100 companies of the CIS countries held business forums on "India, Turkey and the CIS" in Istanbul and Dushanbe. The purpose of these activities is to study the best ways for Turkey and India to join the Central Asian markets and indigenous expansion of ties between New Delhi and oil and gas exporters.

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