A senior Indian official stressed the importance of the Southern Iranian port of Chabahar for the transit of India's products to other countries.
The Iranian port (Chabahar) is a very significant port for investment and it also links India with its neighbors," Director General of the Indian Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses Arvind Gupta said.
The Port of Chabahar is a seaport in Southeastern Iran. Its location lies on the border of the Indian Ocean and the Sea of Oman. It is the only Iranian port with direct access to ocean. The port was partially built by India in the 1990s to provide access to Afghanistan and Central Asia, bypassing Pakistan.
Iran's Chabahar port, which is located 72 kilometers West of Pakistan's Gwadar port, holds immense strategic and economic significance for India. Chabahar and Gwadar ports are located in a common coast and they are 70 kilometers away from one another.
In July, Head of Iran's Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (ICCIMA) Gholam-Hossein Shafeyee announced that Iran plans to turn its Southeastern Chabahar Port into a trade hub in the near future
"Those investing in the area will have a secure and promising prospect," Shafeyee said in a meeting with Indian Ambassador to Tehran Shri Niraj Srivastava in the Iranian capital at the time.
Shafeyee pointed to Iran's emphasis on the rail transport system, and said, "The country plans to connect Mashhad rail road in the Northeastern Iran to the Western Afghan province of Herat and launch development projects in Sarakhs special economic zone in Northeastern Iran.
Srivastava, for his part, described Chabahar Port as a key location for the promotion of Iran-India trade, and said, "New Delhi seeks to participate in development of the area."
The diplomat said that India has allocated USD 300 million to invest in the development of Chabahar Port and the country plans to take part in development of rail roads from the area and shipping lines in the next steps.