India has taken over operations of the strategic Chabahar port  in the Sistan-Balochistan province of energy-rich Iran’s southern coast. The physical take-over of the terminal area, cargo handling equipment, and office building was completed by December 29, 2018.In 2016 the tripartite deal between India, Iran and Afghanistan on Chabahar port was signed. India has pledged $500 million for developing this port which will be connected through rail and road links to Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan.
The heads of Indian, Iranian and Afghanistan delegation jointly inaugurated the office of the Indian SPV – India Ports Global Chabahar Free Zone (IPGCFZ) at Chabahar.Commercial operations began at IPGCFZ with the arrival of a vessel and IPGCFZ carried out its first cargo operation.


  • This is the first time India will be operating a port outside its territory.
  • The port is easily accessible from India’s western coast and is increasingly seen as a counter to Pakistan’s Gwadar Port located at distance of around 80 km from Chabahar.
  • The port wil open a new strategic route connecting Iran, India and Afghanistan bypassing Pakistan.
  • The trilateral agreement on Chabahar port, in one sense, is Indian answer to CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) presently being developed jointly by China and Pakistan.
  • It wil strengthen India’s both energy and maritime security.
  • Chabahar port will make transportation of gas from Iran to India much more economical and easier. Not only that, this will provide an alternate sea-land route for the gas pipeline from Iran.
  • Chabahar is the only Iranian port which has direct access to the ocean.Now with its presence at Chabahar, India will be in a better position to tackle the threat being posed by the Chinese ‘String of Pearls’.
  • The port is a gateway to golden opportunities for trade by India Iran and Afghanistan with central Asian countries besides ramping up trade among the three countries in the wake of Pakistan denying transit access to New Delhi. 
  • Integrated development of connectivity infrastructure including ports, road, and rail networks would open up greater opportunities for regional market access and contribute towards the economic integration and benefit of the three countries and the region.
  •  The Chabahar port is also seen as a feeder port to the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) that has sea, rail and road routes between India, Russia, Iran, Europe, and Central Asia.


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