Apart from the full
fledged port at Tajpur, West Bengal is all set to commission an Iinland Container
Depot (ICD) at Darjeeling, coastal employment zones at
Kolkata and Haldia and hubs for export of leather items, footwear and furniture
from the Centre’s Sagarmala
Project. The ICD
at Darjeeling is under implementation and will be one of the 15 multi-modal
logistics parks being developed across the countryWest“
ministry had earlier decided to set up a new port at Sagar Islands but the West
Bengal government insisted on setting up the port at Tajpur. After negotiations
with the state government the centre decided to support the Bengal government’s
project of setting up a new port at Tajpur. The fate of the port project at
sagar islands is however not known.
We have identified
more than 570 projects at a total investment of nearly Rs 8, 00,000 crore. The
plan is to reduce costs with minimum change in infrastructure. Ports will be
modernized and connectivity to them will be improved. The next step is to
develop skills among the coastal communities.
Finally, there will
be port land industrialization. We want future industries to come up closer to
ports and create Coastal Industrial Zones and Maritime Clusters. This is a
20-year program that started from 2015. Of the projects identified, 59 have
already been completed and 162 are under implementation at a cost of Rs
1,69,786 crore,” K K Aggarwal, Joint Secretary, Sagarmala Project, Ministry of
Shipping, said in Kolkata on May 25
The ministry plans
to increase the capacity of ports by 210 million tons by the end of 2018-19.
Along with this, 970 km of road and 716 km of rail connectivity to the ports
will be completed. The ministry has also tied up with Siemens to set up Centres
of Excellence in Maritime and Shipbuilding (CEMS).
These centres have
the capacity of training 10,000 people in port-based industry every year.
According to Aggarwal, nearly 1,100 of those trained are already employed.
“Nearly 2,103 people have already been trained in ship design and shipbuilding
and 6,825 have undergone training in safety aspects at the world’s largest
shipbreaking unit in Alang. The ministry has already released Rs 825 crore for
this. As part of port modernization, the turnaround time of ships will be
Feasibility Reports (TEFRs) are being prepared for five port projects including
Tajpur. For Tajpur, nearly 14 months
will be required for the Detailed Project Report after which the project will
be sent to the Centre for approval.
There will be no
paucity of funds for the projects that have already been identified,” Aggarwal
added. Mr Aggarwal was speaking at a workshop on ‘Challenges in the Maritime
and Logistics Industry’ by The Bengal Chamber (BCC&I). Among the other
participants were K Swaminathan, director (service business), Balmer Lawrie
& Co Ltd, Nick Dimokidis, senior claims executive, M/s Charles Taylor
Mutual Management (Asia) Pte Ltd, managers of The Standard Club Asia Ltd,
Singapore (P&I Club) and Atul Joshi, DIG, Indian Coast Guard, Eastern