In its latest push to develop Iran’s Chabahar port project, India handed over two 140-tonne cranes for loading and unloading equipment to the Iranian government on Sunday.
The cranes, part of a full consignment of six Mobile Harbour Cranes (MHC) worth about $25million were sourced from Italy and formally released at a ceremony at Chabahar’s Shahid Beheshti port after official talks between India and Iran.
The cranes delivery comes after several delays due to the impact of U.S. sanctions on various parts of the Chabahar project, which have slowed down both the procurement of equipment, as well as banking and insurance arrangements for developing infrastructure, even though India received a “sanctions waiver” from Washington for developing Chabahar port.
Last July, The Hindu had reported that after waiting for a response for months, the Iranian government decided to drop India from its plans to jointly develop the railway line from Chabahar to Zahedan near the Afghanistan border in July last year and complete the project on its own. Iran has also operationalised a second railway line to Afghanistan, connecting Khaf to Herat. In November, Iran’s Port and Maritime Organisation wrote to the Modi government requesting cranes, locomotives, tracks, and switches signaling equipment, as these remain hard for Iran to access directly.
Source: The Hindu