Ris­ing tran­sit of goods via Iran to con­tinue in up­com­ing year

Tehran Times - - FRONT PAGE - By Mah­naz Abdi

The fig­ures re­leased by Iran’s Road Main­te­nance and Trans­porta­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion (RMTO) show that over 8.5 mil­lion tons of com­modi­ties have been tran­sited via Iran dur­ing the 11-month pe­riod ended on Fe­bru­ary 19.

This amount of goods which have been moved through 32 ac­tive land and mar­itime bor­ders of the coun­try in­di­cates 20 per­cent growth com­pared with that of the same pe­riod of time in the past year.

The data re­leased by RMTO and also Is­lamic Re­pub­lic of Iran Cus­toms Ad­min­is­tra­tion (IRICA) prove that the tran­sit of goods via Iran has been ex­pe­ri­enc­ing an in­creas­ing trend since the be­gin­ning of cur­rent Ira­nian cal­en­dar year (March 21, 2017).

This trend which in­di­cates im­por­tance of the coun­try in re­gional trade is an­tic­i­pated to con­tinue in the up­com­ing cal­en­dar year (start­ing on March 21) through some un­der­way de­vel­op­ment plans.

De­vel­op­ing Iran’s largest con­tainer port

One of this plans is de­vel­op­ment of Shahid Ra­jaee Port in south­ern prov­ince of Hor­moz­gan.

The port has been al­ways the most ac­tive bor­der for tran­sit. It ac­counted for

35 per­cent of the tran­sited com­modi­ties dur­ing the men­tioned 11-month pe­riod in which over three mil­lion tons of goods were tran­sited through this port.

Shahid Ra­jaee Port is Iran’s big­gest con­tainer port han­dling over 85% of the coun­try’s con­tain­ers. It has the load­ing-un­load­ing ca­pac­ity of 100 mil­lion tons, ac­count­ing for over 55% of Iran’s trade and 70% of tran­sit.

The third phase of the port’s de­vel­op­ment plan was launched on Fe­bru­ary

28 in the pres­ence of Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani, and Trans­port Min­is­ter Ab­bas Akhoundi.

Upon the com­ple­tion of this phase within three years, us­ing 8.6 tril­lion ri­als (about $193.2 mil­lion), the port’s ca­pac­ity will be in­creased to eight mil­lion TEU, ac­cord­ing to the Head of Ports and Mar­itime Or­ga­ni­za­tion Mo­ham­mad Ras­tad.

Rail­way-con­nected ports un­der spot­light

Con­nect­ing the ports to the rail­way net­work is an­other pri­or­i­tized plan that will con­trib­ute sig­nif­i­cantly to pro­mo­tion of the coun­try’s tran­sit sta­tus.

For ex­am­ple, a rail­way is un­der con­struc­tion to con­nect Chaba­har Port in south­east­ern prov­ince of Sis­tan-Baluches­tan to Za­hedan (cen­ter of the prov­ince) which will el­e­vate the role of this strate­gic port in tran­sit of goods.

The project to build this rail­way has a 25.7-per­cent progress and it will be com­plete by the next 2-3 years.

It is worth men­tion­ing that last Oc­to­ber In­dia launched a trade route to Afghanistan via Iran through ship­ping its first con­sign­ment of wheat to Afghanistan via Chaba­har, by­pass­ing long­time ri­val Pak­istan and has said that it plans to send more ship­ments of wheat to Afghanistan via the Ira­nian port.

De­vel­op­ment of tran­sit via rail­way on agenda

Mean­while, de­vel­op­ment of tran­sit via rail­way is on the agenda of the Is­lamic Re­pub­lic of Iran Rail­ways (known as RAI).

De­vel­op­ment of rail­way net­work in the bor­der ar­eas is a good op­por­tu­nity for el­e­vat­ing tran­sit which plays some sig­nif­i­cant role in bring­ing more in­come for the coun­try and also more em­ploy­ment, ac­cord­ing to Ebrahim Mo­ham­madi, the pre­vi­ous deputy of RAI for op­er­a­tion and traf­fic.

Cus­toms mea­sures for im­prov­ing tran­sit pro­cesses

Tran­sit of goods via Iran is also planned to in­crease through some mea­sures by IRICA, as it is one of the pri­or­i­tized plans of IRICA ac­cord­ing to its head, Foroud As­gari.

The cus­toms ad­min­is­tra­tion is pur­su­ing the ob­jec­tives of boost­ing the amount of tran­sited goods and also im­prov­ing tran­sit pro­cesses and in this due it has taken a num­ber of mea­sures, for ex­am­ple es­tab­lish­ment of some sys­tems such as on­line con­trol of the com­modi­ties and tak­ing risk fac­tors into ac­count for con­trol­ling tran­sited prod­ucts.

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