The Ports and Shipping Organisation (PSO) is seeking talks with the Dubai-based ports operator DP World, and the Indian investment conglomerate, Hinduja Group. The two companies have proposed building and operating a terminal at the port, with capacity for 500,000 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs).

Talks have been going on sporadically since late 2007, but they stalled in March during the long public holiday to celebrate the Iranian New Year on 20 March. Tehran is now keen to get the negotiations back on track.

“Now we are in a new year, we want to talk to representatives of DP World and Hinduja. There has been no progress beyond the initial proposal and we need to negotiate,” says Alireza Satei, a member of the PSO board and vice-president for port affairs.

The PSO’s masterplan for Chabahar would see the port reach a capacity of six million TEUs by 2030. A $350m first phase, bringing capacity to 640,000 TEUs is scheduled for completion by 2010.