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Chabahar port to connect Afghanistan with sea route by end of 2016

AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: The Chabahar port in Iran is expected to connect Afghanistan with sea route by the ed of the upcoming year.

“The strategic port will also enable the Central Asian countries to bypass Pakistan. Work has already begun on the Chabahar port,” quoted by PTI, India’s Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Sunday.

He said they kick off port activities in a year or a year-and-a-half, adding that a draft agreement will be signed within a month in this regard. “I have given the orders to bring out tenders for purchasing cranes for the port. An agreement will be signed within a month,” Gadkari remarked.

According to India’s NDTV, the port will be developed through a special purpose vehicle (SPV) which will invest $85.21 million to convert the berths into a container terminal and a multi-purpose cargo terminal.

Access to Afghanistan’s Garland Highway can be made from Chabahar port using the existing Iranian road network and the Zaranj-Dilaram road, constructed by India in 2009. This will establish a direct road access to four major cities including Herat, Kandahar, Kabul, and Mazar-i-Sharif.

It is said that the port will also be used to ship crude oil and urea, saving India transportation costs. It will also cut transport costs and freight time for India to Central Asia and the Gulf by about a third.

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