Analysis of the Northern Ports of Iran in Regional Development

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant professor of geography and urban planning, Faculty of Geography Sciences and Planning, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

2 PhD candidate in geography and urban planning, Faculty of Geography Sciences and Planning, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran


Nowadays, a great mass of goods and effective services in economy of countries and coastal areas is transported through the sea which has spawned considerable interest due to its necessity and positive properties. As the seaport plays a very important role in development of geographical areas, its potentials and advantages should be evaluated. As the process of development is not the same in different countries with different levels within development process in the provinces and regions. Development of provinces and regions of the country due to the heterogeneous spatial distribution of resources may be out of process. In other words, due to regional capacities and comparative advantages, the development of these areas is different or even inappropriate. Development and evaluation of the potential development areas is one of the subjects of geography, therefore, the theoretical foundations of the science can be seen in this area. It is necessary to assess the potential and advantages of port cities. Given the key role in the development of regional ports, planners need to identify the opportunities and benefits of these cities to play their role in the development of geographic areas. The regional studies are attempting to find capabilities and capacity for growth and development in each region. In the present research, the facilities of each seaport of northern areas are specified and evaluated from the standpoints of economy, efficiency and equipment. In fact, the purpose of this study is to identify the capabilities and their proportional advantages for development of this region.
This research has a descriptive – analytical methodology. To collect data, it is necessary to consider documents based on the libraries and filed studies. Geographical considerations about the northern seaports of the country have been performed using the AHP model. In this research, since the purpose is the identification of relative advantages for regional development, 3 seaports of Novshahr, Anzali and Amirabad (Behshahr) were selected based on their efficiency in northern region of the country. Based on the multivariate analysis model of AHP, one of the ports was specified as the most appropriate with the most potential of development in the region.
Results and discussion
The northern seaports were evaluated in two steps in such a way that in first step, the seaports of Mazandaran province were compared and the better ports were identified based on the considered criteria. In next step, the best selected port of Mazandaran province was compared with Anzali seaport as the best port of Guilan province. The methods and principles of the comparison are presented in each step.
At this point, Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) method is used to make a comparison in the importance of the options in the ports. The AHP is based on the judgment; the result is a relative judgment that can vary from person to person. In addition, it requires cumbersome mathematics, so it is easy to understand and can effectively control both quantitative and qualitative data.
The first step in the analytic hierarchy process is creation of a hierarchical structure in which the objectives, criteria, options and the relationship between them is shown. Four important next steps in the analytic hierarchy process are coefficient criteria and the criteria to calculate the coefficient of options, calculation of the final score of logical consistency check options and judgments.
In the first three criteria: location, facilities (with substandard equipment total number of drought, total number of marine equipment, garden area, covered storage area) and function (with the following criteria, the movement of thousands of vessels, number of incoming ships, the total export of non-oil, non-oil imports) are considered to evaluate options (Noshahr ports, Anzali, Amirabad). Then, to determine the importance of the criteria, the sub-indices are discussed. These criteria and sub-criteria are compared in a qualitative method. This comparison is based on pairwise comparison matrix technique or two by two. A logical way has been conducted to determine the value or weight of the objective criteria and sub criteria.
After formation of the matrix, consistency index of Sati is performed using accepted criteria to test the judgments. In this way, the first row of the matrix as a geometric mean is calculated and then normalized. The coefficient measures the importance of normalizing these numbers, namely the division of the total number are achieved.
To get the important factor, it was carried out in the next step. First, the criteria for pairwise comparison and after the formation of matrix (A, B, C), the following important factors have been calculated for each criterion sub-criteria (location, equipment, performance).
Scoring options are evaluated based on the criteria presented in sub-criteria (10) states. The final score is calculated and the results are evaluated as follows:

Noshahr with a final score 0.5471
Amirabad with a final score 0.1777
Anzali with a final score 0.5871

Therefore, as you can see in the Anzali port, the first three of the criteria are compared. Noshahr is also compared with Amirabad (also province) as rated higher in terms of the criteria.
This research examines the identification of relative advantages of northern seaports to specify the most appropriate port from the standpoint of regional development. In a comprehensive investigation of the northern seaports in 3 provinces of Mazandaran, Guilan and Golestan, their efficiencies were considered. The three seaports of Bandar Anzali, Novshahr and Amirabad (Behshahr) were selected among all seaports according to their geographical location and their facilities are compared with other seaports of northern region.
Evaluation of the three sample seaports using the Analytical Hierarchical Process (AHP) indicated that Anzali was chosen as the most appropriate one in development of the northern region of Iran.


Main Subjects

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  • Receive Date: 29 December 2013
  • Revise Date: 03 February 2014
  • Accept Date: 05 March 2014
  • First Publish Date: 22 June 2015