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Cargotec for Chabahar?

Cargotec is understood to have been awarded a contract by India Ports Global for four RMGs and 10 RTGs for the Iranian port of Chabahar, on a low bid basis

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According to the Hindu BusinessLine, India Ports Global Pty Ltd (IPG) has awarded Cargotec Oy in Finland a contract for four RMGs and 10 RTGs for the new Iranian Port of Chabahar, on a low bid basis of around US$18M.

As previously reported, IPG is a joint venture of JNPT Mumbai and Deendayal PT (formerly Kandla PT) that was awarded a 10-year concession to develop Chabahar following an Indo-Iranian bilateral agreement (WorldCargo News, August 2015, p8). New Delhi is backing the plan because Chabahar provides an alternative to Karachi for Afghani foreign trade and it looks as though this strategy is succeeding (this is discussed in WorldCargo News, March 2018).

India is increasingly worried about China’s influence and Indian Ocean reach through its friendship with India’s strategic rival Pakistan. In particular, Gwadar, which is close to Chabahar, is in practice a Chinese port.

Cargotec has told worldcargonews online that it is not able to comment on the reports, but it seems fair to assume that the Kalmar design equipment must be coming from the Rainbow-Cargotec joint venture in China, so it is not clear why Cargotec in Helsinki needed to sign the contract. The timeline is reported to be 16-18 months for the RMGs and 12-14 months for the RTGs. Last August IPG placed orders with ZPMC for four STS gantry cranes and it is now also tendering for four mobile harbour cranes and 32 tractor/trailer sets.

A curious point is that last year leading western port equipment companies such as Konecranes, Cargotec and Liebherr reportedly told IPG that the President Trump’s hostility to Iran, reversing the previous Obama Administration’s policy line, made it difficult for them to bid on Chabahar projects.


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