Loading, unloading at ports noticeably successful despite sanctions

March 15, 2021 - 12:57

TEHRAN- The head of Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization (PMO) said that despite the sanctions imposed on Iran’s shipping activities, loading and unloading of goods have been noticeably successful at the Iranian ports.

Making the remarks addressing the journalists and reporters on the sidelines of the annual gathering of the PMO directors, Mohammad Rastad said, “Many fruitful measures were taken in most of the ports, while some good development projects were also implemented this year”.

The latest data released in terms of the amount of loading and unloading at the ports of country indicates that 122 million tons of commodities have been loaded and unloaded at the ports during the first ten months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20, 2020 – January 19, 2021).

As announced last month by the head of PMO, the capacity of Iranian ports is expected to increase to 280 million tons by the end of the current government's incumbency (early August).

Rastad put the current loading and unloading capacity of the country’s ports at 250 million tons.

“We have signed 300 contracts with the private sector for conducting development projects including the construction of structures, equipment, and even infrastructure in ports,” he said.

According to the official, the private sector has currently invested over 160 trillion rials (about $3.8 billion) in the country’s ports.

Mentioning the restrictions created by the U.S. sanctions in the country’s ports and maritime activities, the official said: “In all areas which were affected by the U.S. sanctions we tried to rely on domestic capacities and managed to keep the ports active and the country’s imports and exports afloat.”

The capacity, infrastructure, and equipment of the ports have made it possible for them to be able to load and unload goods in accordance with international standards, he stressed.

“For all kinds of goods and all types of vessels, including light to heavy goods and also super-sized commodities and vessels, there are berths and special terminals in the country that can provide the necessary services,” Rastad added.

The official put the total length of the Iranian port wharves at 39 kilometers, saying that this has made it possible for different types of ships and vessels to be able to dock and load or unload their cargoes.

“Today, we have no problems regarding the loading and unloading of basic goods, bulk goods, and containers in the country’s ports, and the commodity owners are not obliged to pay demurrage charges (damages for delayed unloading and loading) to ships because of port operations, and this shows how standard the Iranian ports are,” the PMO head added.

The official has also said that the country’s trade gateways were not closed even a moment despite the sanctions and pandemic, adding that loading and unloading of goods, especially the essential goods, are continuously conducted at the ports.

As announced by the PMO head, loading and unloading of commodities are being conducted continuously at the ports of Iran while the health requirements are completely met.

Rastad has reiterated that all port operations are done observing healthcare protocols and the principles set by the Coronavirus Containment Headquarters.

In a statement in mid-October last year, PMO declared that loading and unloading of commodities are underway continuously at the country’s ports.

While the enemy is trying to halt Iran’s exports and imports through imposing sanctions, operation at Iranian ports are underway without interruption as the result of the all-out efforts of the organization’s personnel, the statement reads.

Meanwhile, as the PMO head has announced, 11 new development projects with 59 trillion rials (over $1.4 billion) of investment are currently underway at the Iranian ports.

Not only the sanctions could not stop development activities at the ports of Iran, some new development projects have been also defined, Rastad has underscored.

The third phase of the development plan of Shahid Rajaee Port is one of the major projects which is going to go operational by the end of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20).

While Iran is combating the U.S. unilateral sanctions on its economy, the country’s ports as the major gates of exports and imports play some significant role in this battle, and the ongoing operation at the ports indicates that they are playing their part perfectly.

As reported, loading and unloading of commodities at the ports of Iran have risen six percent during the past Iranian calendar year (ended on March 19, 2020).

MA/MA

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