As discussions regarding the development of Chabahar Port gain significant momentum, India and Iran signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) recognizing the certificates of competency in the voyages of seafarers from these two nations on Monday.
The MoU signing aims at easing the movements of seafarers from both countries, India’s ministry of ports, shipping, and waterways mentioned.
Sarbananda Sonowal, India’s Union Minister, is on a four-day trip to Iran. He wants to see the progress on Chabahar Port’s Shahid Beheshti terminal development, a critical cog in the path-breaking International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC).
The seafarer agreement, along with the handover of six new mobile harbour cranes to the port authority, is the first-ever tangible development following years of dormancy resulting from Covid restrictions as well as the unfulfilled potential of the port.
Until now, Sonowal has met the VP of Iran, Mohammad Mokhber, and its minister of roads and urban development, Rostam Ghasemi, with discussions between the latter and Sonowal on a long-standing agreement for the improved growth of the Chabahar Port.
Per Iranian media reports, Ghasemi expects the negotiations to become fruitful in the next two months after executing technical and legal processes.
Last week, Business Standard reported that the discussions were on the minister’s plan and Iran’s proposal to extend the port’s lease by 18 months.
The Chabahar Port is slated to be the Indian gateway for trade with European and central Asian countries, along with other engagement with Russian forces, once its potential is fully leveraged by linking it to the INSTC. It was developed with India’s aid and is now operated by India Ports Global.
References: The Hindu, Business Standard