- Sai Charan
The Iran-China Comprehensive Agreement
Recent murmurs of Iran and China negotiating a long-term partnership agreement which includes a comprehensive trade and security agreement will mark a significant geopolitical shift not only for Iran and China but also for the wider region. The deal's details are not yet released in the public domain. The deal is sending shock waves in the region, especially in the region's capitals, as well as, the U.S. Over the past few years, China through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has been trying to secure its global supply chains as well as enter new markets for its products. Lately, The BRI hit a roadblock due to concerns over levels of debt accrued by the participating countries.
The proposed agreement would expand Chinese presence in banking, telecommunications, ports, railways, and other projects. The majority of these sectors are in desperate need of help as they have been reeling under the U.S. led economic sanctions over the country's nuclear program. The Trump administration has earlier revoked the Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action (JCPOA) which brought some hope to the Iranians. The revocation has further strengthened the anti-west faction within Iran. Isolation of Iran by the western countries, especially the U.S., has forced the Iranians to forge a new alliance with the Chinese.