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India to Revisit Non-functional Ports

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

February 4, 2015

 In a move to encourage traders to use India's vast 7,500 km coastline for transporting local freight, the country's shipping ministry is formulating a plan to revive several of its 133 nonfunctional ports, reports Economic Times. 

 A concept note for forming special purpose vehicles by Shipping Corporation of India and Dredging Corporation of India with state governments and private operators was prepared by the ministry.
 The ministry is looking at developing five coastal ports in the next one year itself as part of the plan. To start with, $ 5 million per port would be provided by the government to kick start their development. 
The state governments should take care of remaining funds in order to provide connectivity to nearby state, national highway or railway station. Further expenditure on the port like maintenance dredging would be undertaken out of the revenues arising from port operations. 
These minor ports face mostly dredging issues or lack terminal facilities. The new collaboration would be on a revenue share basis, according to the ministry sources. The ministry is planning to hire a private consultancy to study the scope of coastal shipping in India and ways of promoting it. The revenues from the port would be shared among the consortium partners in an agreed upon ratio.  
DCI would undertake dredging operations at the ports while SCI would berth three of its coastal container vessels, each of 1,869 TEUs capacity.
India has 200 ports in all, of which only 67 are operational. 

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