For the Ministry of Shipping, 2017 has been a year of consolidation, a
year of building up on the good work of the past few years, and strengthening
the ground for further ongoing development. It highlighted some of the salient
features in a release.
The release has the following for the shipping sector.
Admiralty (Jurisdiction and Settlement of Maritime Claims) Act, 2017
(Jurisdiction and Settlement of Maritime Claims) Act, 2017 was enacted on
August 9, 2017. The Act consolidates the existing laws relating to admiralty
jurisdiction of courts, admiralty proceedings on maritime claims, arrest of
vessels and related issues and repeals five obsolete British statues on
admiralty jurisdiction in civil matters. The Act confers admiralty jurisdiction
on High Courts located in coastal states of India and this jurisdiction extends
up to territorial waters. This Act will fulfill a long-standing demand of the
maritime legal fraternity.
High Courts of all the coastal states will exercise admiralty jurisdiction over
maritime claims which include several aspects not limited to goods imported and
chattel as earlier, but also other claims such as payment of wages of seamen,
loss of life, salvages, mortgage, loss or damage, services and repairs,
insurance, ownership and lien, threat of damage to environment, etc. The
legislation accords highest priority to payment of wages of the seafarers. It
also provides for protection against wrongful and unjustified arrest and has
provision for transfer of cases from one High Court to another High Court.
Merchant Shipping Bill, 2016
MS Bill was
referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee in December 2016. The
Committee gave its recommendations on July 18, 2017. The recommendations of the
Committee have been examined. Cabinet Note on proposal for
acceptance/non-acceptance of the recommendations of the department-related
Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture and
introduction of official amendments to Merchant Shipping Bill, 2016 was
circulated for inter-ministerial consultations on 10.10.2017 and is expected to
be approved by the Ministry of Law. Thereafter, it will be submitted to the
Cabinet and then the Lok Sabha would be requested to take up the Bill for
consideration and passing along with official amendments.
industry is one of the most globalised industries operating in a highly
competitive business environment. This industry is far more liberalised than
most of the other industries and is, thus, intricately linked to the world
economy and trade. Indian shipping tonnage, which was only 1.92 lakh Gross
Tonnage (GT) on the eve of Independence, now stands at 122.32 lakh GT with
1,359 ships as on 31.10.2017.
Financial Assistance Policy
The government of
India has an ongoing Rs 4,000 crore Shipbuilding Financial Assistance Policy
for 10 years (2016-2026) to encourage domestic shipbuilding. Under this policy,
financial assistance is granted to Indian shipyards equal to 20 per cent of
lower of "contract price" or the "fair price" of each
vessel built by them.
Ministry of Shipping on 31.10. 2017 rolled out an updated version of the web
application, along with an amended set of guidelines, for facilitating
shipyards to apply under the policy.
of Environment Management Plan at Alang-Sosiya ship recycling yards
A loan agreement
was signed on 15.09.2017 between JICA and the Ministry of Finance for grant of
soft loan of $ 76 million for upgradation of the environment management plan at
Alang-Sosiya ship recycling yards.
Corporation of India
A secondhand VLGC
size gas tanker was delivered to Shipping Corporation of India on September 14,
2017 at Khorfakkan, UAE. With this, SCI became a 6-million DWT company.
‘Make in India’ by
Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL): Under the Make in India initiative, Cochin Shipyard
is constructing four passenger-cum-cargo vessels as per order placed by the
Andaman and Nicobar Administration. Two of the vessels will have a capacity of
500 persons and 150 tonnes of cargo and the other two will have a capacity of
1,200 persons and 1,000 tonnes of cargo.
Ship Repair Facility
The Minister of
Shipping laid the foundation stone for the International Ship Repair Facility
at Cochin Port Trust on 17.11.2017. This facility is being developed by Cochin
Shipyard at a cost of Rs 970 crore. It will have a ship lift and transfer
system, six work stations and allied facilities and is expected to generate
employment for 1,500 persons.
Cochin Shipyard is
also setting up a Dry Dock, to augment its shipbuilding/ship repair capacity,
at a project cost of Rs 1,799 crore. The contract for the project will be
awarded shortly and is scheduled to be completed in 30 months thereafter.
to raise funds for these projects, Cochin Shipyard went in for an IPO by way of
issue of 3,39,84,000 shares of Rs 10 each amounting to Rs 33.984 crore. The
issue, which opened on August 1, 2017 and closed on August 3, was
oversubscribed by 76.18 times.
Maritime University (IMU) has introduced 3 new courses—BBA (Logistics,
Retailing and E-Commerce), M.Sc. (Commercial Shipping Logistics) and M.Tech
(Marine Engineering and Management)—from the Academic Year 2017-18. IMU has
signed a MoU with Southampton Solent University.
headquarters has been built on 300 acres of land at a cost of Rs 130.80 crore
in Chennai.IMU’s Mumbai Campus has been bifurcated into IMU Mumbai Port Campus
and IMU Navi Mumbai Campus. A new Academic Annex Building for installing
simulators was inaugurated in June 2017. It has framed about 20 new ordinances
and modified old ordinances which have been published in the Gazette. Agreement
has been signed to set up a Centre of Excellence (CoE) at IMU, Visakhapatnam
Campus with SPV, comprising IRS, Siemens and Ministry of Shipping.
re-elected as a member of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Council
under Category ‘B’ by getting second highest number of votes during the IMO
Council election held at the IMO on December 1, 2017.
A Memorandum of
Understanding (MoU) between the government of India and government of United
Arab Emirates on Institutional Cooperation on Maritime Transport was signed on
January 25, 2017.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Federal Transport Authority -
Land and Maritime in the United Arab Emirates and the Directorate-General of
Shipping on the Mutual Recognition of Certificates of Competency as per the
provisions of the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW,
78) and amendments thereof was signed on January 25, 2017.
agreement on merchant shipping between India and Cyprus was signed on April 28,
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and the Netherlands for
bilateral cooperation in the fields of ports, maritime transport and logistics,
which was originally signed on February 12, 2008 and, subsequently, renewed on
May 10, 2011 and May 11, 2014, was further extended on October 11, 2017 for a
period of 3 years till October 10, 2020 as per the renewal clause mentioned in
the said MoU.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between India and Austria on October
3, 2012 on technology cooperation in the shipping and ports infrastructure
sector was valid for a period of 5 years till October 2, 2017. It was renewed
for another period of 5 years beginning from October 3, 2017 as per the renewal
clause mentioned in the said MoU.
Shipping (Continuous Discharge Certificate) Rules, 2017
Merchant Shipping (Continuous Discharge Certificate) Rules, 2017 have been
notified. The main objective of the new CDC Rules is to facilitate the issuance
of CDCs and hence smoothen the entry of budding seafarers into the maritime
profession. The restrictive conditions in the previous CDC Rules for getting an
Indian CDC were a hindrance for entering into the profession. This was against
the mantra of ‘ease of doing business’ and were also contrary to the stated
objective of the government of India for increasing the share of Indian
seafarers in the global shipping industry.
request of the Ministry of Shipping, the Department of Fertilisers has included
the primary movement of subsidised urea and P&K fertilisers by rail and/or
coastal shipping or inland water transportation. Now, the movement of
subsidised fertilisers by the coastal route and also by road qualifies for reimbursement
of freight subsidy which will encourage the coastal movement of fertilisers,
said a release.