Maritime India Vision 2030: Rs. 25,000 Crore Maritime Development Fund, Make in India and New Port Regulatory Body

Maritime India Vision 2030, a blue print for development of maritime sector in next years is set to be released by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Maritime India Summit in November, envisions maritime development In India for next 10 years.

This visionary document proceeds further the ambitious Sagarmala project, major investment of Rs. 3.5 Lakh Crore to double the cargo volumes from current 1,300 million tonnes to 2,600 million tonnes, this is expected to create 2 million additional jobs in maritime and related sectors, and unlock additional revenue of about Rs. 20,000 crore funding is allotted to state owned ports, The Hindu Business line reported.

Maritime India Vision 2030 relooks at tapping 15,000 acres of land owned by port authorities to accelerate port led industrialisation, for which a land use policy is being finalised by Ministry of Shipping.

The MDF seeks to provide low cost, long-tenure financing to the sector with the Centre contributing ₹2,500 crore over seven years, according to the document reviewed by Business Line. This is part of a plan to promote shipping tonnage (capacity) under the Indian flag.

Maritime Indian Vision 2030, also includes Eastern Waterways Transport Grid project for enhanced connectivity with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar.

Vision document also announces, Government will build threee mega ports of capacity 300 million tonnes and above, increase Indian cargo shipped domestically, from 25 per cent to 75 per cent, reduce vessel shipping related charges and deepen the draft to 14-18 meters, and new ports to have 18 meters.

To ease shipping regulation, and increase shipping capacity under Indian flag, Merchant shipping Act will be re-written, which will form part of Maritime India Vision 2030 to help increase India’s shipping tonnage capacity.

Earlier A ship was not deemed Indian, unless wholly owned by Indian citizen, Indian company or principle place of business in India, as per section 21 of Merchant shipping Act.

Government is considering to ease the registration norms by allowing vessels if they are substantially owned by Indian and Overseas Corporate Indian (OCI) and Limited Liability Partnerships, to be registered under Indian flag.

Newly, State run firms and Public companies are mandated to hire only ships owned by local companies for transport contract values under Rs. 200 crores. This is likely to give boost to local companies.

Replacing the old Indian Ports Act 1908, new Indian Ports Act will include a regulatory authority to oversee ports, institutional coverage of ports, improve investments, and promote structured growth of ports.