0341 GMT January 28, 2020
The CEO of Ports and Maritime Organization of Iran Mohammad Rastad, said that around 100 trillion rials (over $833 million) were invested by private entities in structures and plants in major Iranian ports since the start of the Iranian year on March 21, Press TV reported.
Rastad said the investments were mainly for activities in manufacturing, construction and logistics.
He said that the expansion program was mainly focused on three ports in southern Iran, namely, Shahid Rajaei, Bushehr and Chabahar, adding that Amirabad Port in the north had also become a hub for investors keen to operate along the Caspian Sea coast.
The official said Iran was also helping tourism grow along its coastal locations, especially in the north, where a pier has been set up on Anzali port to allow cruise ships and tour boats to dock.
Rastad did not elaborate on how much of the growing investments in Iranian ports was related to foreign entities.
However, the increase comes despite sanctions imposed by the US on Iran as Washington seeks to stifle Iran’s shipping and seaborne trade in a bid to weaken the country's economy and to force it into concessions on its nuclear and missile programs.
Statistics show that the size of Iran’s seaborne trade has not been affected by sanctions since they began in November as exporters continue to use devaluation in the country’s currency, the rial, to find more markets in countries in the Persian Gulf, in Russia and others around the Caspian Sea.