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Budget 2024 Highlights : ₹700 crore for Sagarmala Programme

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NEW DELHI : In the interim budget presented in Parliament by Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday ₹700 core has been allocated for the Sagarmala Programme.

The government launched the Sagarmala programme in 2015 to transform India’s 7,500 km long coastline and 14,500 km of potentially navigable waterways into a hub of maritime activity.

The programme aims to connect Indian ports with industrial clusters through a network of efficient transport and communication systems, logistics infrastructure, and coastal communities. Reducing logistics costs, increasing port capacity through modernisation, development of coastal communities and enhancing maritime security are some of the key objectives of the Sagarmala programme.

The government looks to modernise and expand existing ports, set up new ports and develop special economic zones (SEZs) around ports. At the same time, coastal connectivity will be improved through rail, road and inland waterways for faster movement of shipments.

The programme also aims to develop fisheries, tourism, and other maritime activities in coastal communities. Logistics infrastructure such as warehouses, cold chains, and other facilities will be developed in participation with the private sector.

The Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways has launched several initiatives in the maritime industry to bolster India’s socio-economic and regulatory environment.

The government has identified more than 574 projects involving a total cost of ₹6.01 lakh crore under the Sagarmala programme for implementation until 2035. As of 30 September 2019, a total of 121 projects with a cost of ₹ 30,228 crore were completed and 201 projects worth ₹309, 048 crore were under implementation.

Finance Minister Nirmal Sitharaman allocated a total ₹450 crore for supporting Sagarmala schemes and projects and Sagarmala Development Company in 2023-24 financial year.

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