From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : International North–South Transport Corridor (INSTC)
Mains level : Read the attached story
Iran started the first transfer of Russian goods to India via a new trade corridor which transits the West Asian nation, people on the Iranian side familiar with the developments told news outlets.
The cargo will travel through the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC).
What is the news?
- The cargo ship departed St. Petersburg for the Caspian Sea port city of Astrakhan.
- It will reach the northern Iranian port of Anzali and then will be transferred by road to the southern port of Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf.
- From Bandar Abbas it will reach via ship to India at Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT).
International North–South Transport Corridor (INSTC)
- The INSTC is a 7,200 km-long multimodal transportation network encompassing sea, road, and rail routes to offer the shortest route of connectivity.
- It was established on 12th September 2000 in St. Petersburg, by Iran, Russia and India for the purpose of promoting transportation cooperation among the Member States.
- It links the Indian Ocean to the Caspian Sea via the Persian Gulf onwards into Russia and Northern Europe.
- It will move freight between India, Iran, Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Central Asia and Europe.
Significance of INSTC
- Trade facilitation: INSTC is aimed at reducing the carriage cost between India and Russia by about 30 per cent and bringing down the transit time by more than half.
- New corridor in making: It has the potential to transform the economies of countries along the corridor into specialized manufacturing, logistics, and transit hubs by facilitating access to newer markets.
- Multimodal transit: The recent Suez Canal blockade, which cost the global economy hefty damage amounting to US$9 billion, has amplified the optimistic outlook towards the INSTC as a cheaper and faster alternative multimodal transit corridor.
Benefits offered to India
- Export promotion: The INSTC connects India with Central Asia, and Russia, and has the potential to expand up to the Baltic, Nordic, and Arctic regions, increasing the scope of trade multifold.
- Ease of trade: For India, it provides a shorter trade route with Iran, Russia, and beyond to Europe, creating scope for increased economic engagement.
- Alternative Route to Central Asia: It opens up a permanent alternative route for India to trade with Afghanistan and Central Asia, given the hurdles in the direct route through Pakistan.