External Affairs Minister Dr Jaishankar will attend the conference in Tashkent on July 15-16

New Delhi: Uzbekistan is hosting the Central-South Asia Conference 2021 in Tashkent titled the International Conference on Central and South Asia Regional Connectivity, Challenges and Opportunities.

External Affairs Minister Dr Jaishankar will attend the conference in Tashkent here on July 15-16. Talking to ANI exclusively ahead of the conference, the Indian Ambassador to Uzbekistan Manish Prabhat stressed the importance of the conference and what are India's expectations from the high-level visit.

"India has been talking to all the countries for connectivity since the year 2000. Iran and Russia were working together along the north transport corridor. Today many countries work together. India wants every possible connection to be maintained in these countries," Ambassador Manish told ANI.

Meanwhile, the Indian envoy to Uzbekistan emphasised the role of the Chabahar port in Iran and how it can play an important role for trade in the Central Asia region.

"India has done a lot to develop the Chabhar port in Iran especially. We want this connectivity to be done through the port of Chabahar so that our trade will increase to countries of Central Asia. At present trade is happening from Afghanistan. Chabahar port can play an important role for businesses in central Asian countries too," Prabhat told ANI.

"The Central Asian country is completely landlocked. So India wants to open trade routes and create new routes, as well as increase trade through air corridors. All these things will happen at the conference. India's proposal will also be put up by the Foreign Minister Dr S Jaishankar," the envoy told ANI.

The major international connectivity summit titled "Central and South Asia: Regional Connectivity. Challenges and Opportunities" is being held in Tashkent on the initiative of President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev.

Dignitaries and heads of state from around 40 countries will attend the summit which aims to enhance connectivity. There will be three general topics of discussion at the summit: economy, security, culture.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, EAM India Dr S Jaishankar and more than 250 other participants from over 40 countries and international organisations will attend the summit.

Dr Jaishankar will have meetings with representatives of many countries on the sidelines of the summit including Afghanistan, European Unions and Kazakhstan.