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Tuesday, 19 Apr 2016
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After Highways Government eyes Ports for massive investment

India is the fastest growing major economy in the world and is slated to clock a GDP growth of 7.5 per cent in 2016-17, as per the RBI. The government, however, wants to take it beyond 8 per cent in the medium-term and into double-digits over the long-term, given the economic benefits the country is enjoying at the moment vis-à-vis other economies in the world.




Inaugurating the Maritime India Summit 2016, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the government will invest Rs 1 trillion in the ports sector over the next decade to make the 7,500-km long coastline an "engine of growth". "Our vision is to increase port capacity from 1,400 million tonne to 3,000 million tonne by 2025. We want to mobilise an investment of Rs 1 trillion in the port sector to enable this growth," Modi said, adding that the government wants to promote port-led development and energise the coastal economy with an intent to modernise ports and integrate them with special economic zones, port-based smart cities, industrial parks, warehosuses, logistic parks, cold storage and transport corridors.


Government Projex Announced


The National Perspective Programme for Sagarmala was launched by the PM at the Summit whcih is an amalgamation of 150 projects categorised into port modernisation, connectivity, port-led industrialisation and coastal community development. Union Minister of Shipping, Nitin Gadkari, during the Summit announced to complete the Sagarmala port development project in five years.


After Kandla in the 1950s, India has not built any other major port except for the development of private sector non-major ports. As part of its aggressive plans for port-led development, the government is looking to add eight new major ports to the already existing 12. The new ports include the three already announced at Wadhwan in Maharashtra, Sagar in Bengal and Colachel in Tamil Nadu entailing an investment of Rs 25,000 crore. Work on these ports will start this year itself. The locations of the other five ports have not been revealed.


About 12 industrial clusters are proposed which would attract investment to the tune of Rs 85,000-90,000 crore in land and an additional Rs 12,000-15,000 crore in basic infrastructure. Further, 14 coastal economic zones in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal are also proposed.


Investments Attracted


The three-day Summit witnessed agreements entailing investments of over Rs 82,000 crore which included 35 concession agreements of Rs 5,900 crore, 20 work orders of Rs 8,250 crore and 86 MoUs involving an investment of over Rs 68,700 crore. About 240 projects were offered at the Summit, with over 100 projects under the Sagarmala project.


During the Summit, the Defence ministry entered into a pact with the Shipping ministry for executing projects worth Rs 75,000 crore. Bulk of the defence orders are expected to be shared with private sector shipyards. Further, the Visakhapatnam Port Trust (VPT) signed five MoUs with various business houses, worth Rs 20,000 crore, during the Maritime India Summit 2016 in Mumbai


Quote of the week:

"Our vast coast line of 7500 km offers vast investment opportunities"

- Narendra Modi, PM, India
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