Chabahar Port will be handed over to the Indian company within a month as per an interim pact, Iranian Minister of Roads and Urban Development Abbas Akhoundi said. Indian has been funding the strategic Chabahar port to counter the Chinese presence in Gwadar Port and also get a direct access to Afghanistan, bypassing Pakistan.
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“Now, we are ready just to handover the Chabahar port to the Indian company just to operate this in an interim agreement that already we had with Indian part for one and a half year,” Iranian minister stated.
The Chabahar port is located in the Sistan-Balochistan province of Iran and is easily approachable from India’s western coast and is seen as a counter to Pakistan’s Gwadar Port located at distance of about 80 km from Chabahar.
Akhoundi after a meeting with his Indian Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said: “We have already moved one step forward, We should introduce a banking channel to India, which we already did it and fortunately has been formally accepted by the Indian side”.
“Indian side had an investment in the Chabahar port and we are moving towards utilisation of the Chabahar port,” Akhoundi said, adding that the handing over of the port should be done “during one month.
The first phase of the Chabahar port was inaugurated in December 2017 by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, commencing a vital route connecting Iran, India and Afghanistan bypassing Pakistan. The Chabahar port is being considered by India as a high potential project which gives Delhi direct access to Iran, Afghanistan and with Central Asian nations.