India: Major thrust to minor ports

Continuing with its efforts to cash in on the immense potential of minor ports across the state, the government has come up with a slew of measures. Focusing on industrial development of 17 minor ports in the state, the budget proposes to bring in a comprehensive shipping policy.
The new policy is aimed at increasing coastal shipping activities, attracting more goods transport through vessels, creating more employment opportunities and reducing atmospheric pollution. It has been declared that the ports at Neendakara, Thalassery, Beypore, Kayamkulam, Vadakara, Kannur, Cheruvathoor, Neeleswaram, Kasargod, Manjeswaram, Azheekal, Vizhinjam, Thankassery, Kodungalloor and Munambam will be developed with infrastructure facilities.
An amount of `247 crore has been allocated for the Ports Department for various initiatives. In a clear indication that the Port Department is also stepping into tourism promotion, the Finance Minister proposes to launch tourist transport services to Alappuzha. Tourist services will be operated from Fort Kochi in Ernakulam and Valiyathura in Thiruvananthapuram. There are proposals for developing marinas in Alappuzha and Thankassery ports. The budget has allocated ` 22 crore for Harbour Engineering Department.
Source: Express News Service
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