How can PM GatiShakti be harnessed for ports, shipping, and inland waterways?
Our ministry through various initiatives under the ambitious PM GatiShakti National Master Plan aims to provide systematic, multi modal connectivity to various economic zones for seamless movement of people, goods and services. The shipping ministry is identifying new alignment and upgrading of road and new rail projects which are essential for ports for movement of sizeable freight traffic in the future. There are 101 projects under GatiShakti worth ₹62,627 crore for implementation by 2024, of which 13 projects worth ₹565 crore are supported financially under Sagarmala scheme.
The National Logistics Policy has reinforced the push towards port connectivity and seamless movement of goods. What opportunity do you see here?
NLP envisages the creation of a single window e-logistics market to reduce logistics costs, to improve India’s trade competitiveness, and to create more jobs and pave the way for India to become a logistics hub. Cargo movement through inland waterways and coastal shipping shall be enhanced to achieve optimal multimodal transport mix.
How do you plan to get financing for these large projects? Is there an intention to get cheaper financing for ports too?
Public Private Partnership (PPP) is considered as an effective mode for attracting investment. Until now 86 projects at major ports worth ₹55,000 crore have been granted approval under PPP. To achieve large-scale investment target through PPP, asset monetization was introduced. A robust pipeline of well-structured projects was introduced as the National Monetization Pipeline. The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways has identified a pipeline of 81 PPP projects worth ₹42,300 crore till 2024-25 for developing berths and terminals across the major ports.
A lot of the push is towards privatization of terminals and becoming landlord ports. JNPA is the first such port in the country, is there a timeline for the rest?
The PPP mode of investment in Indian ports has made a remarkable progress in the last 25 years, resulting in the capacity addition and productivity improvement. Now, Jawaharlal Nehru Port has become the first major port of the country to become 100% Landlord port having all berths being operated on PPP model. We are speedily moving towards landlord model of port operations and you can expect similar transformational changes like JNPA in other Major Ports also in the near future.
Ship building and ship recycling have not been living up to their full potential in India. The pandemic too had disrupted global supply chains. When do you predict that we will be out of these issues?
The ship-building and ship recycling industry are now performing very well and have evolved from the ravages of the pandemic. Following the initiative of Atmanirbhar Bharat, Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) delivered to the Indian Navy the indigenously built aircraft carrier INS Vikrant. CSL, in collaboration with IHC, Holland, is beginning the construction of the first indigenously built 12000 Cubic meter Hopper capacity Trailing Suction Dredger.
A new ship building company – Hooghly Cochin Shipyard Limited was dedicated to the nation last month. This Shipyard will be involved in the construction of green vessels such as those running on Hybrid or Pure electric, non-conventional fuels and fuel cells. Coastal and inland river vessels, river cruise vessels, river container vessels, LNG/Methanol fuel vessels, and barges will be built under Make in India. This facility is suitable for the construction of around 12 to 15 vessels a year.