The international corridors are increasingly being seen as drivers of economic development in recent times. Elucidate the significance of International North South Transportation Corridor (INSTC) for India while drawing its comparisons with One Belt One Road of China.
International North South Transportation Corridor (INSTC) is a 7200Km long 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. India is one of its founding members.
The proposed infrastructure project would :
a) Once fully functional INSTC will substantially reduce time taken and cost for transport of goods between India and Eurasia .It could reduce the time and cost of deliveries by 30-40 per cent.
b)It will increase economic activities between India , Iran, Russia and Eastern Europe.
c) It will increase connectivity between India and land locked Central Asian region which is a rich source of minerals and provides access to their untapped markets.
d) It will eliminate the need for reefer container for agro-commodities from India to Russia.
e)The INSTC has economic and strategic relevance to India given the increasing regional ambitions of China through its One Belt, One Road Initiative. Though both the initiative seek to increase connectivity through multi-modal transportation between different regions. OBOR would connect China to Eastern Europe and Africa, thus has larger connectivity area.
f) INSTC is a multilateral initiative while OBOR is unilateral with China making major investments.
g)Many countries are still not clear about OBOR. Countries which are part of INSTC have signed agreement and taken initiative.
With AAGC(Asia Africa Growth Corridor) to be built the help of Japan, INSTC can be seen as counter to OBOR.
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