Port Wings News Network:
Officials at Indian Shipping Ministry announced that they will start development operations of strategic Chabahar Port in Iran by the next week despite US pullout from JCPOA and the reinstatement of sanctions, according to a report by Mehr News Agency.
According to Hindustan Times, India has selected Iran’s Kaveh Port and Marine Services Company for running the development operations of Chabahar Port for a period of 18 months. In the meantime, India will be looking for a competent Indian company for managing and maintaining the facility for long term.
India undertook control of the first phase of Chabahar Port (Shahid Beheshti Dock) in the wake of President Rouhani’s visit to India in Feb. 2018 and pledged to start expansion project of this port before June 17, 2018.
Under a memorandum of understanding signed between India and Iran in May 2016, India would equip and operate two terminals in Chabahar port Phase-I with a capital investment of $85.21 million and annual revenue expenditure of $22.95 million on a 10-year lease.
India’s International APGL Company was set up by the Indian government in 2015 for the development of ports abroad.
Gopal Krishna Deputy CEO of Indian Shipping Ministry said, “we have been able to enter Chabahar port for interim operations, which will start from June 13.”
The shipping ministry has also started the process to invite fresh bids to select an Indian partner to manage, operate and maintain the port for the next 10 years.
Chabahar port located in the Sistan-Baluchistan Province of Iran on the southeastern coast is of great strategic importance to India. It will provide India an alternative and reliable access route into Afghanistan, bypassing Pakistan. This would also give India access to the resource-rich Central Asia.