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India secures second overseas port: Sittwe agreement approved by MEA

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NEW DELHI : After Chabahar, India has gained the rights to operate a second overseas port, Sittwe, in Myanmar. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has approved a proposal for India Ports Global (IPGL) to take over the operations of the entire port located on the Kaladan River.

IPGL is a company 100 per cent owned by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways.

India Ports Global Limited (IPGL) is a joint venture between Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) and Deendayal Port Trust (Erstwhile Kandla Port Trust). It was created and incorporated in January 2015 under the Companies Act, 2013, as per directions of Ministry of Shipping (MoS), for development of ports overseas.

The Ministry of Shipping has presently assigned IPGL the task of equipping and operation of container/multi-purpose terminals at Chabahar Port in Iran.

The Sittwe Port is part of the Kaladan multi-modal transit transport project. The project aims to connect the eastern Indian seaport of Kolkata with Sittwe seaport in Myanmar by sea, and further link Sittwe Port to Paletwa in Myanmar via Kaladan river waterway, and connect Paletwa to Zorinpui in Mizoram through a road component.

This link will not only offer an alternative route for shipping goods to the northeastern states, but will significantly reduce the cost and distance from Kolkata to Mizoram and beyond. It will also reduce dependency on the Siliguri Corridor, known as the chicken’s neck, which is squeezed between Bhutan and Bangladesh.

Last year in May, Union Minister Shri Sarbananda Sonowal and Myanmar’s Deputy Prime Minister Admiral Tin Aung San jointly inaugurated the Sittwe Port and welcomed the first Indian cargo ship.

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