The International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) will promote trade between India and Azerbaijan, Ambassador of India to Azerbaijan Bawitlung Vanlalvawna told Trend news agency, pointing out that Azerbaijan is an important INSTC member.
“We believe the full operation of the INSTC will ensure better connectivity between India and Azerbaijan and the larger Eurasian region. The completion of the project will significantly facilitate movement of goods and promote better trade and economic engagements between the two countries,” Vanlalvawna noted.
It is estimated that the INSTC route from Mumbai to Moscow via Baku through Bandar Abbas or Chabahar ports in Iran would be significantly more cost effective and 40% shorter than the current sea route, the Ambassador said. “We therefore, attach great importance to our collaboration with Azerbaijan in the INSTC project and are happy to work with Azerbaijan for further development and popularizing of INSTC,” he added.
The North-South Transport Corridor was envisaged by the intergovernmental agreement signed between Russia, Iran and India on September 12, 2000. In total, 13 countries have ratified the agreement (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Oman, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkey and Ukraine).
The aim of the Corridor is to reduce the delivery time of cargos from India to Russia, as well as to Northern and Western Europe (at present, delivery time on this route is over six weeks, but it is expected to be three weeks via INSTC). Subsequently, the Corridor will be developed further to also link Caucasus, Central Asia and Caspian Sea regions with Persian Gulf area.