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Pakistan to Join International North-South Transport Corridor

Pakistan has accepted an invitation from Russian President Vladimir Putin to join the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC,) according to Islamabad’s Ambassador to Russia Muhammad Khalid Jamali. Addressing the International IT-Forum in the Russian city of Khanty-Mansiysk on June 19, the Ambassador said his government has already started the membership process. (Note that the International IT Forum, June 18-20, involving over 50 events, was organized by the “Russian BRICS chairmanship.”) “We are moving in that direction,” the ambassador said as reported by [ AAJ English TV.


The 7,200 kilometer/ 4,474 mile-long INSTC is a multimodal transportation network, connecting Central Asia, North Europe, India, Iran, Azerbaijan, and Russia. It dove-tails the 3,000 kilometer/2000 mile China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The latter is a transport and economic development corridor between Pakistan and China. It terminates at the port of Gwadar on the Arabian sea, a distance of only 160 kilometers from the Iranian port of Chabahar where the land route of the INSTC terminates. While Gwadar was built by China, and now is managed by the China Overseas Port Holding Company (COPHC), Chabahar was built in cooperation with India, and is managed by  India Ports Global Limited. A railway between the two ports is planned.

The ambassador underscored Pakistan’s and Russia’s participation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the fact that his country is applying for BRICS+ membership. He also pointed to the growing trade between the two countries, with Pakistan having imported 1 million tons of crude oil from Russia, and its seeking continuous access to Russian oil and gas.