Chabahar Port a gateway to golden opportunities: Nitin Gadkari
Union Minister Nitin Gadkari has said that once Chabahar Port in Iran becomes operational, there will be no looking back as it will be a gateway to golden opportunities. As a special envoy of India, deputed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Road Transport and Shipping Minister Gadkari is in Tehran and represented India at the oath taking ceremony of President Hassan Rouhani for the second term.
“Talks are on for building railways and roads through Chabahar till Afghanistan and then we have access to Russia. Once Chabahar is operationalised, which we are hopeful to be in 12 to 18 months time, it will prove to be a gateway to golden opportunities to boost trade and business,” Gadkari told PTI.
Chabahar port, located in the Sistan-Balochistan province in the energy-rich Persian Gulf nation’s southern coast, lies outside the Persian Gulf and is easily accessed from India’s western coast, bypassing Pakistan.
“We are hopeful of ratification of Trilateral Transit and Transport Agreement by Iran and once approvals are given, the work will start,” Gadkari said. The trilateral pact was inked during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Tehran in May 2016.
The pact envisages establishment of Transit and Transport Corridor between India, Iran and Afghanistan using Chabahar Port as one of the regional hubs for sea transportation in Iran besides multi-modal transport of goods and passengers across the three nations.
Gadkari said operationalisation of the Port will not accelerate the infrastructure projects but will be a “win-win situation” for the nations as it would give tremendous boost to trade and offer vast opportunities to investors.
“Chabahar will not only boost ties between Iran and India but we will be closer to Afghanistan and then Russia….We can export goods till Russia. This will be a direct route,” he said.