A 3-day SUMMIT and exhibition, The flagship initiative of India’s Union Minister of State (I/C) for Ports, Shipping And Watwerways, Mr. Mansukh Mandaviya, was attended by various stakeholders in the maritime sector including senior and eminent policy planners, domestic and international investors, CEOs of Indian and global maritime companies, industry experts, thought leaders, technology providers, bankers and insurers, representatives of major ports and shipping lines from across the world.
The conference focused on vast investment opportunities in each of the Indian maritime states and union territories.
India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi inaugurated the second edition of the summit via video conferencing, in New Delhi, on March 2, 2021. He also launched an e-book, “Maritime Vision 2030”, which is aiming to make the Indian maritime industry at par with the top global benchmark in the next 10 years.
Minister of Transport of Denmark Mr Benny Englebrecht, Chief Ministers of Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh, Union Minister, Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan were present on the occasion.
Welcoming the Guests, Mr.Mansukh Mandaviya said that the Maritime India Summit is one of the biggest virtual summits in the world, with the participation of more than 1.7 lakh registered participants from more than 100 nations. “In this three-day summit, we will have ministers from 8 nations, more than 50 global CEOs and more than 160 speakers which includes 115 international speakers from 24 nations.”
Mr. Mandaviya further assured all stakeholders in the sectors and investors from across the globe and said that Government of India is all geared up for facilitating and grounding the investments in the maritime sector and the maritime industry’s role in the vision of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’.
The Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi unveiled the e-plaque of ‘Sagar-Manthan’:Mercantile Maritime Domain Awareness Centre(MM-DAC). It is an information system for enhancing maritime safety, search and rescue capabilities, security and marine environment protection.
Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister invited the world to come to India and be a part of India’s growth trajectory. India is very serious about growing in the maritime sector and emerging as a leading Blue Economy of the world. Through the focus areas of upgradation of infrastructure, boosting reform journey, India aims to strengthen the vision of Aatamnirbhar Bharat, he said.
The Prime Minister asserted that his Government is investing in waterways in a way that was never seen before. He said, domestic waterways are found to be cost-effective and environment-friendly ways of transporting freight. Mr Modi said, government aims to operationalise 23 waterways by 2030. He also pointed out that India has as many as 189 lighthouses across its vast coastline and the government has drawn up a programme for developing tourism in the land adjacent to 78 lighthouses. He announced that steps are also being taken to introduce urban water transport systems in key states and cities such as Kochi, Mumbai, Gujarat and Goa.
Prime Minister noted that instead of a piecemeal approach focus is on the entire sector as one. He informed that capacity of major ports have increased from 870 million tonnes in 2014 to 1550 million tonnes now. Indian ports now have measures such as: Direct port Delivery, Direct Port Entry and an upgraded Port Community System (PCS) for easy data flow. Our ports have reduced waiting time for inbound and outbound cargo. He also informed that mega ports with world class infrastructure are being developed in Vadhavan, Paradip and Deendayal Port in Kandla.
TEXT OF PM’s SPEECH
My Minister Colleagues Shri Mansukh Bhai Mandaviya, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, Chief Ministers of various states, Excellencies, Distinguished guests,
I welcome you all to the Maritime India Summit 2021. This Summit brings together many Stakeholders relating to this sector. I am sure together we will achieve great success in boosting the maritime economy.
India is a natural leader in this sector. Our nation has a rich maritime history. Civilisations flourished on our coasts. For thousands of years, our ports have been important trading centres. Our coasts connected us to the world.
Through this Maritime India Summit, I want to invite the world to come to India and be a part of our growth trajectory. India is very serious about growing in the maritime sector and emerging as a leading Blue Economy of the world. Our leading focus areas include: Upgrade current infrastructure. Create next-generation infrastructure. Boost the reform journey. Through these steps, we aim to give strength to our vision of AatmaNirbhar Bharat.
When I talk about upgrading current infrastructure, I give great importance to improving efficiency. Instead of a piece-meal approach we focused on the entire sector as one.
And the results of this are visible. The capacity of major ports which was around 870 Million tonnes per annum in 2014 has increased to around 1550 Million tonnes per annum now. This productivity gain not only helps our ports, but also boosts the overall economy by making our products more competitive. Indian ports now have measures such as: Direct port Delivery, Direct Port Entry and an upgraded Port Community System for easy data flow. Our ports have reduced waiting time for inbound and outbound cargo. We are also investing heavily in development of storage facilities at the ports and plug-and-play infrastructure for attracting industries to portland. The ports will promote ‘Waste-to-Wealth’ through sustainable dredging and domestic ship recycling. We will encourage private investment in the ports sector.
Along with efficiency, lots of work is also happening to boost connectivity. We are integrating our ports with Coastal Economic Zones, Port-based Smart Cities and Industrial Parks. This will anchor industrial investments and promote global manufacturing activity near ports.
As far as creating new infrastructure goes, I am delighted to share that Mega ports with world-class infrastructure are being developed at Vadhavan, Paradip and Deendayal Port in Kandla. Ours is a Government that is investing in waterways in a way that was never seen before. Domestic waterways are found to be a cost effective and environment friendly way of transporting freight. We aim to operationalize 23 waterways by 2030. We would do this through: Infrastructure enhancement, Fairway development, Navigational Aids and Rivers Information System provisioning. The Eastern Waterways Connectivity Transport Grid for regional connectivity with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar will be strengthened to effective regional trade and cooperation.
New maritime infrastructure is a great means to boost ‘Ease of Living. Ro-Ro and Ro-Pax projects are also significant elements of our vision for harnessing our rivers. Waterdromes at 16 locations are being developed to enable sea-plane operations. River cruise terminal infrastructure and jetties are being developed on 5 national waterways.
We aim at domestic and international cruise terminal development at selected ports through infrastructure development and enhancement by 2023. India has as many as 189 light-houses across its vast coastline. We have drawn up a programme for developing tourism in the land next to 78 lighthouses. The key objective of this initiative is to enhance development of the existing light-houses and its surrounding areas into unique maritime tourism landmarks. Steps are also being taken to introduce urban water transport systems in key states and cities such as Kochi, Mumbai, Gujarat and Goa.
Like all other sectors, we are ensuring that work relating to the maritime sector does not happen in silos. We recently made the ambit wider by renaming the Ministry of Shipping as Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways. The ministry will strive for excellence in: Maritime shipping and navigation, Education and training for the mercantile marine, Ship-building and ship-repair industry, Ship-breaking, Fishing vessels industry and floating craft industry.
The Ministry of Port Shipping and Waterways has created a list of 400 investable projects. These projects have an investment potential of 31 Billion Dollars or Rupees 2.25 lakh crores. This will further strengthen our commitment to the overall development of our maritime sector.
The Maritime India Vision 2030 has been launched. It outlines the priorities of the Government. The Sagar-Manthan: Mercantile Marine Domain Awareness Centre has also been launched today. It is an information system for enhancing maritime safety, search and rescue capabilities, security and marine environment protection. The Sagarmala project for promoting port-led development was announced by the Government in 2016. As part of the Programme, more than 574 projects at a cost of 82 billion US Dollars or Rs 6 lakh crores have been identified for implementation during 2015 to 2035.
The Government of India is also focusing on the domestic ship building and ship repair market. To encourage domestic ship-building we approved the Ship-building Financial Assistance Policy for Indian Ship-yards. Ship repair clusters will be developed along both coasts by 2022. Domestic ship recycling industry will also be promoted to create ‘Wealth from Waste’. India has enacted Recycling of Ships Act, 2019 and agreed to the Hong Kong International Convention.
We want to share our best practices with the world. And, we are open to learning from global best practices. Continuing with our focus on trade and economic linkages with the BIMSTEC and IOR nations, India plans to enhance investment in infrastructure and facilitate mutual agreements by 2026. Government of India has also initiated holistic development of island infrastructure and ecosystem. We are keen to promote the use of renewable sources of energy in the maritime sector. We are in the process of installing solar and wind-based power systems at all the major ports across the country. We aim to increase usage of renewable energy to more than 60% of total energy by 2030 in three phases across Indian ports.
India’s long coastline awaits you. India’s hardworking people await you. Invest in our ports. Invest in our people. Let India be your preferred trade destination. Let Indian ports be your port of call for trade and commerce. My best wishes to this Summit. May the discussions be extensive and productive.
PARTICIPATION OF SEVERAL COUNTRIES
Several countries participated in the event, including the CEOs and Ambassadors of several countries to boost investment in the Maritime sector in India. Over one lakh participants from 50 countries are believed to have registered online
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and his Andhra Pradesh counterpart YS Jaganmohan Reddy also joined the event via video conferencing.
The Secretary of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterway Dr. Sanjiv Ranjan also briefly explained the Budget 2021-22 announcements that are related to shipping, ports, and maritime sector and termed them as a pathbreaking initiatives to promote Aatmnirbhar Bharat.
He added that a whole new range of opportunities will be opening up with the Major Ports Authorities Bill 2020, which was passed in the Parliament on February 10.
Maritime India Vision 2030
It is a ten-year blueprint for the maritime sector released by the Prime Minister of India at the Maritime India Summit in November 2020.
It will supersede the Sagarmala initiative and aims to boost waterways, give a fillip to the shipbuilding industry and encourage cruise tourism in India.
Policy Initiatives and Development Projects:
· Maritime Development Fund: A Rs. 25,000-crore fund, which will provide low cost, long-tenure financing to the sector with the Centre contributing Rs. 2,500 crore over seven years.
· Port Regulatory Authority: A pan-India port authority will be set up under the new Indian Ports Act(to replace the old Indian Ports Act 1908) for enabling oversight across major and non-major ports, enhance institutional coverage for ports and provide for structured growth of the ports sector to boost investor confidence.
· Eastern Waterways Connectivity Transport Grid project:It will aim to develop regional connectivity with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar.
· Riverine Development Fund: Calls for extending low cost, long-term financing for inland vessels with the support of a Riverine Development Fund (RDF) and for extending the coverage of the tonnage tax scheme (applicable to ocean-going ships and dredgers) to inland vessels also to enhance the availability of such vessels.
· Rationalisation of Port Charges: It will make them more competitive, besides doing away with all hidden charges levied by ship liners to bring in more transparency.
· Promotion of Water Transport:For decongestion of urban areas, and developing waterways as an alternative means of urban transport.