Iran's port capacity up nearly 40pc in 7 years, say ports authorities
IRAN is pressing ahead with plans and projects to increase its port capacity to 280 million tonnes a year, reports Tehran's official Press TV.
Iran's Ports and Maritime Organisation (PMO) says cargo handling capacity at ports south and north of the country rose by nearly 40 per cent in seven years to reach a total of 250 million tonnes in the year to late March.
PMO figures covered in a recent report by the official IRNA news agency showed that Iran's ports capacity would reach 280 million tonnes per year with the completion of a handful projects this year.
The report said total port handling capacity in Iran was around 180 million tonnes in the summer of 2013 when the current administrative government took office for a first four-year term.
It said container capacity at ports will have doubled by mid-summer this year compared to eight years ago to reach a total of 8.5 million TEU.
It said passenger handling at ports will have reached a target of 25 million per year this year, up from 14 million in August 2013.
Iran's customs office says exports surged by 46 per cent in value terms in the two months to May 15.
The expansion of capacity in Iranian ports comes despite massive restrictions facing the country in the past three years because of US sanctions, said the Press TV report.
Shipping and trade involving Iranian ports and maritime entities have frequently been targeted by the sanctions as Washington has sought to choke off the country's export revenues and make it harder for the government to access supplies of basic goods, said the report.