TEHRAN : The Director General of Ports and Maritime Department of Sistan-Baluchestan Province said 17 countries have expressed willingness for contribution to development of Chabahar Port in southeastern Iran, Tasnim news agency reported.
According to Behrouz Aghaie so far 130 foreign company representative delegations have visited Chabahar, of which 17 have expressed willingness for investment in the port.
Emphasizing the fact that Chabahar Port has no restrictions on accepting investors from other countries, Aghaie said, “Working with India does not mean rejecting the presence of other countries in Chabahar Port.”
The official further mentioned negotiations for making the port an especial economic zone and said, “Becoming a special economic zone would solve many of Chabahar’s problems in terms of tariffs, insurance, and other matters, and this is one of the necessities for development of Chabahar Port because it makes it more competitive.”
Referring to the comprehensive development plan of Chabahar Port, the official pointed to some of the provisioned projects in this port including setting up a rice processing plant, construction of slaughterhouse, construction of oil drainage tanks and preparation of silos with over 100,000 tons of capacity.
According to Aghaie, Chabahar is one of the most advanced ports in the region in terms of depth for berthing.
“Shahid Beheshti port has three multi-purpose berths with a total length of over 1700 meter. over 15.5 million cubic meters of dredging has been executed in this port which creates 16.5 meters of depth for berthing of vessels with even highest drafts,” he said.
After years of negotiation, Iran has awarded the development project of this port to India, and the South Asian country committed $500 million to build two new berths in this port.
Chabahar has two main ports, Shahid Kalantari port, and Shahid Beheshti port. Shahid Kalantari port’s development has been finished in 1983. However, the development project for Chabahar’s Shahid Beheshti port is planned to be implemented in five phases of which the first phase was started in 2007 and due to financial problems resulted from U.S.’s first round of sanctions on Iran the project was almost halted until 2016 in which the sanctions were lifted over Iran’s economy.