A delegation from the Belgian port of Antwerp visited Iran last week to re-establish shipping and commercial ties.
According to a report from MarEx, the meetings included officials from Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization, the Islamic Republic Shipping line (IRSL), Iranian Customs and the Iranian investment Organization, finishing with a visit to the Shahid Rajaee port in Bandar Abbas, the largest container port in Iran, which accounts for nearly half of Iranian shipping imports.
Port of Antwerp Authority Chairman Marc Van Peel (pictured) said:
“Up until 2010 Antwerp was the largest European port destination for Iranian cargoes. In the light of the recent nuclear agreement and the raising of economic sanctions, we wanted to let the Iranians know directly that Antwerp is still the ideal hub for reaching the European hinterland.”
Denmark’s Maersk Line has also expressed interest in Iran, but is not expected to enter the market until sanctions are official lifted.
Hanjin Shipping, Yang Ming and CMA CGM have added Bandar Abbas to their services.