A geostrategic initiative being pushed by India to connect with Central Asia and Russia, INSTC's second dry run was reportedly conducted in April this year.
The roughly 7,200 kilometre-long INSTC is a proposed multi-modal (ship, rail and road) transportation system connecting the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf to the Caspian Sea via the Islamic Republic of Iran, from where it connects St Petersburg, Russia, and North Europe. (Read more
According to the "The main route begins in Mumbai, passes along the sea to the Iranian ports of Chabahar and Bandar Abbas, and from there by land to Iran’s Caspian Sea coast and beyond – or across the Caspian Sea to Astrakhan, or overland to Central Asia or the Caucasus to Russia and northern Europe."
INSTC is expected to slash time for transportation of cargo to Russia from India by half to about 30 days. (Read more
According to a Livemint
report on the dry run of the corridor, Indian government officials have said that the INSTC could reduce the time and cost of deliveries by 30-40 per cent. Also, the INSTC is much shorter than the current route, which runs through the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean Sea. Citing the officials, the report added that goods transported through the Suez take 45-60 days to reach Europe, while those transported through INSTC would take 25-30 days.
INSTC's viability also depends upon the Chabahar port in Iran. Situated on the Makran Coast of the Sistan and Baluchestan province of Iran, Chabahar will also serve as a trans-shipment and logistics hub for the INSTC.
India and Iran had in 2003 agreed to develop Chabahar on the Gulf of Oman outside the Strait of Hormuz, near Iran's border with Pakistan.