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173 shipping projects set for revamp: Nitin Gadkari


India will complete 173 shipping projects under Sagarmala programme by 2020, shipping and road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari said. "We want to create a model of port-led development for India through the Sagarmala Port Development Project which will establish new ports and modernise old ones to link our coastal and island territories with the hinterland," a government statement quoting Gadkari said on Thursday. 

Gadkari was in Singapore to attend the 'Indian Ocean Conference'. Most of these 173 projects are in the areas of port modernisation, connectivity improvement and port-led industrial development. The total cost of these projects is $60 billion. The minister said the project will create 10 million new jobs and increase our coastal shipping volumes five times from the current levels of 60 million tonnes per annum. 

"Most importantly Sagarmala programme will also save India close to $6 billion in logistics costs every year," he said "The Sagarmala project will optimise multi-modal transport to reduce cost of domestic cargo by leveraging inland waterways. It will improve export competitiveness by locating discrete manufacturing clusters near ports," he said.

Gadkari said that his ministry has set up a special purpose vehicle to take up maritime projects overseas and has also signed a coastal shipping agreement with Bangladesh. The Indian Ocean Conference was organised by the Indian Foundation along with various institutes in the countries in the region. 

Source: Economic Times

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