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Govt to give grant to SCI to buy ships and catamarans to promote cruise tourism from Mumbai Port

The Centre will give Rs 500crore to the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) to buy ships and catamarans to start passenger transport, Ro-Ro (roll on and roll off) services and cruise tourism. Three jetties have been constructed in Mumbai and JNPT port so that the cruise tourism of the country will be centered around Mumbai.

The minister made the announcement in Mumbai on July fifth while speaking at an industrial event. He said his government would recommend withdrawal of Goods and Services Tax and Customs Duty on cruise liners and ships for at least five years in a bid to promote tourism by sea. 

The Mumbai Port trust with the help of local bodies have already built three jetties in Mandva(Alibaug), Ferry Wharf in Mumbai and Neru near JNPT in Navi Mumbai the minister said  Maharashtra had realized the huge potential and demand for cruising and passenger transport. 

Many Indians go to Singapore to get into a cruise for Bali islands. But Bali is close to Andaman Islands the minister said.

Other than reducing port charges and waving off certain rules for foreign and domestic seaplanes to operate, government will also invest Rs 500 crore on its own to buy cruises and ships. Government maritime or port agencies can run them on their own or lease them out. The government is ready to bear the losses initially, if any," Gadkari said .

With the thrust on clean fuel, the centre has also decided to run ten methanol based buses in Mumbai on an experimental basis.

 


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