Ministry of Shipping gives a positive year-end review – II

Sagarmala projects
More than 605 projects having a total cost of Rs 8.8 lakh crore have been identified under Sagarmala. Of these, 89 projects worth Rs 0.14 lakh crore are completed and 443 projects worth Rs 4.32 lakh crore are under various stages of implementation and development. Sagarmala Programme aims to promote port-led development with a view to reducing logistics cost for ex-im and domestic trade.

Port capacity target
Ministry of Shipping, along with the state governments, is striving to increase the overall port capacity to 3,500+ million metric tonnes per annum (MMTPA) to cater to the projected traffic of 2,500 MMTPA by 2025. Towards this end, 249 port modernisation projects have been identified. Out of these, 107 port capacity expansion projects (cost: Rs 67,962 crore) were identified from the port master plans of 12 Major Ports and are expected to add 794 MMTPA to the Major Ports’ capacity over the next 20 years.

Re-rating of capacity of Major Ports
As per the Berthing Policy for Major Ports, 2016 approved by the Ministry of Shipping, a standardised methodology was laid down to calculate norms for dry bulk berths. An exercise was undertaken to benchmark port capacity with global standards set by the berthing policy and re-rate the capacities of Major Ports. The declared capacity of Major Ports was 1,066 MMTPA as on 31.3.2017. After the re-rating exercise, the effective rated capacity and desired occupancy of Major Ports as on 31.3.2017 were 1,359 MMTPA and 989 MMTPA, respectively.

Port modernisation
Under Project Unnati, global benchmarks were adopted to improve the efficiency and productivity Key Performing Indicators (KPIs) for 12 Major Ports. Around 116 initiatives were identified across 12 Major Ports to unlock more than 100 MMTPA capacity just through efficiency improvement. Out of which, 91 initiatives have been implemented to unlock around 80 MMTPA capacity.

Development of new ports
In addition to projects for capacity expansion of major ports, 6 new port locations, namely—Vadhavan (Maharashtra), Enayam (Tamil Nadu), Tajpur (West Bengal), Paradip Outer Harbour (Odisha), Sirkazhi (Tamil Nadu) and Belekeri (Karnataka) have been identified to increase overall cargo handling capacity.

Port connectivity enhancement
Rail and road connectivity projects are being undertaken to enhance port connectivity to the hinterland.

Indian Port Rail Corporation Ltd (IPRCL) has taken up 32 works (cost : Rs 18,253 crore) across 9 Major Ports, of which 8 works (Rs 175 crore) have been completed. In addition, 23 rail connectivity projects (Rs 24,877 crore) identified under Sagarmala are being taken up by Ministry of Railways out of which 7 projects (Rs 2,491 crore) are completed. Further, 15 rail connectivity projects (Rs 4,193 crore) have been taken up through rail-ports and other operators out of which 3 projects (Rs 52 crore) are completed. A total of 52 projects (Rs 44,605 crore) are in various stages of implementation by these agencies.

Indore-Manmad rail line
An MoU for implementation of the 362 km Indore- Manmad new railway line project was signed on August 28, 2018 between Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, Ministry of Railways, government of Maharashtra and government of Madhya Pradesh. The new project will reduce the distance from Mumbai/Pune to key central India locations by 171 km, resulting in lower logistics costs. This is especially significant as the new railway line will pass through the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor nodes of Igatpuri, Nashik and Sinnar; Pune and Khed; and Dhule and Nardana.

112 road connectivity projects are being undertaken by various agencies. Out of the 112 road projects, 54 road projects (Rs 22,158 crore) are included under Bharatmala Programme. 102 projects will be executed by MoRTH and NHAI and the remaining 10 road projects by state PWD, port authorities and Sagarmala Development Company (SDC) in coordination with MoRTH/NHAI. A total of 5 projects (Rs 268 crore) have been completed and 97 projects (Rs 1,80,347 crore) are under implementation.

Port-led industrialisation
14 Coastal Economic Zones (CEZs) covering all the maritime states and Union Territories have been identified. CEZ perspective plans have been prepared and detailed master plans will be prepared for 4 pilot CEZs—Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh—in the first phase of development. Policy framework for development of CEZ is under finalisation based on recommendation of inter-Ministerial Committee for CEZ development under the aegis of CEO, NITI Aayog.

In addition, 38 potential port-linked industrial clusters across energy, materials, discrete manufacturing and maritime sectors have been identified. Out of these industrial parks, one mega food processing park at Satara, Maharashtra (Rs 139 crore) has been completed and 3 power clusters (Rs 7,6547 crore) in Krishnapatnam (AP), Ennore (TN) and Tuticorin (TN), 8 electronics manufacturing clusters (Rs 1,704 crore) in AP, Gujarat, Odisha, Kerala, West Bengal and 3 food processing parks (Rs 1,348 crore) in Andhra Pradesh and Kerala are under implementation. Also under development are: SEZ at JNPT (Rs 12,624 crore), Smart Industrial Port City (SIPC) at Paradip (Rs 3,350 crore) and Kandla (Rs 11,147 crore), and Coastal Employment Units (CEUs) at VOCPT and KPL.

Coastal shipping

Cabotage relaxation
To promote trade, ease of doing business and coastal shipping in India as per the stated objectives of the Sagarmala Programme, relaxation under Section 406 and 407 of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 with respect to cabotage was notified with respect to fertilisers, agricultural products, fisheries, horticultural and animal produce commodities, and containers. Based on feedback of industry on this relaxation, a clarification was further issued in September 2018 that the minimum movement of fertiliser to the extent of 50 per cent of the total cargo onboard a ship is applicable only for cargo loaded at any Indian port for coastal movement.

Perspective plan on coastal shipping
A study with an objective to prepare a robust perspective plan with actionable recommendations to promote coastal and short sea shipping, integrating seamlessly with IWT and leveraging multimodal linkages with rail and road is underway in association with the Asian Development Bank (ADB). As a part of this study two stakeholder workshops were organised in June 2018 and October 2018, wherein an analysis of commodities that can be transported through coastal shipping and a corresponding analysis of potential origin destination pairs was presented to ports, shipping lines and industries that can use coastal shipping.

Coastal berth scheme
41 projects (Rs 1,535 crore) have been sanctioned under the coastal berth scheme for financial assistance of Rs 633 crore out of which Rs 334 crore has been released to Major Ports/state maritime boards/state governments. The coastal berth scheme for creation of infrastructure to promote movement of cargo/passengers by sea/national waterways has been extended up to March 2020 and its scope has been expanded to cover the cost of preparation of DPR and capital dredging at Major Ports.

Skill development
Ministry of Shipping has undertaken skill gap analysis for the coastal community in 21 coastal districts and assisted domain Ministries and state governments in implementation of action plan for them. As a result, 1,917 people have been trained and 1,123 placed in jobs.

To support the development of the fishermen community, Ministry of Shipping is part-funding select fishing harbour projects in convergence with Department of Animal Husbandry Dairying & Fisheries (DADF) to improve livelihood of fishermen community. For this purpose, Rs 323 crore has been sanctioned for 13 projects (cost: Rs 1,189 crore). These projects are expected to benefit over 1.5 lakh fishermen and would have capacity to handle more than 2.3 lakh tonnes of fish.

Centre of Excellence in Maritime & Shipbuilding (CEMS)
A Centre of Excellence in Maritime & Shipbuilding (CEMS) has been setup at Vizag and Mumbai in coordination with IRS and Siemens at a cost of Rs 766 crore. The objective of the centre is to meet the domestic skill requirement in ship design, manufacturing, operating and maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO). The long term purpose is to become an international nodal centre in South Asia, attracting students from neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia for skill development in the port and maritime sector. In 2018, the implementation of CEMS was initiated in both Vizag and Mumbai campuses. Workshops for orientation of stakeholders were held at both centres. The CEO, COO and other team members have been hired. Labs have been set up at both campuses. Training has also started in both campuses.

National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC)
Ministry of Shipping has set up the National Technology Centre for Ports, Waterways and Coasts (NTCPWC), at IIT Madras in Chennai, to provide innovative and research-based engineering solutions to various issues related to ports, waterways and coasts in the country. NTCPWC will act as a technology arm of Ministry of Shipping for providing the needful technological support to Ports, Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) and all other related institutions.The project cost of Rs 70.53 crore is being shared by MoS, IWAI and the Major Ports. NTCPWC will provide indigenous software and technology, make technical guidelines and standards and address port and maritime issues with models and simulations. The areas of applied research of NTCPWC are 2D and 3D modelling of ocean, coastal and estuarine flows, sediment transport and morphodynamics, navigation and manoeuvring, dredging and siltation, port and coastal engineering-structures and breakwaters, autonomous platforms and vehicles, experimental and CFD modelling of flow and hull interaction, hydrodynamics of multiple hulls and ocean renewable energy.

NTCPWC started functioning in April 2018 from a new building within IITM. The staff has been hired and the 10 projects are currently being undertaken. The tender for equipments—Semateb and FRL—have been issued and the tender for new campus construction is currently under approval process of IITM Board. The Ministry is also examining the matter of issuing of awarding work by MoS institutions nomination basis and a decision on it is expected soon. The first oversight committee meeting was held in July 2018. The next oversight committee meeting is being planned along with an outreach event at NTCPWC, IITM.

Multiskill Development Centres for maritime logistics
In order to achieve the vision of 100 per cent skilled manpower at ports and fulfil skill requirements of the employers in the port and maritime sector, the development of Multiskill Development Centres (MSDC) at all Major Ports is being taken up under Sagarmala. In this regard, JNPT MSDC has already been set up and a private operating partner—Allcargo—has been selected and the MoU has been signed. The process is underway at Chennai¸Visakhapatnam and Cochin ports.

Ministry of Shipping has issued a notification and general order for relaxation under section 406 and 407 of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 for coastal movement of ex-im transhipment containers and empty containers. This relaxation allows both Indian entities to charter foreign flagships and allow foreign flagged ships by shipping lines to ply on the coastal routes without the hassle of getting a licence with conditionalities. The relaxation for ex-im transhipment containers and empty containers will (i) promote shifting of transhipment of cargo from foreign ports to Indian ports leading to increased profitability of Indian containers handling ports and employment generation, (ii) increase in competition amongst shipping lines leading to reduced freight rates making Indian trade more competitive, (iii) increased logistics efficiency due to enhanced competition will improve competitiveness of Indian ex-im trade, (iv) promote coastal transportation of containers, (v) upon establishment of ecosystem in India, Indian ports can potentially attract cargo originating/destined from/for foreign ports for consolidation at Indian ports, and (vi) retention of foreign exchange in India.