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Seven ships carrying fertilisers rerouted from Red Sea so far : Government

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NEW DELHI : Indian Government on Tuesday said that seven ships carrying fertilisers have been rerouted from the Red Sea so far due to disturbances.

In a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilizers Bhagwanth Khuba said the Department of Fertilizers is regularly monitoring the status of fertiliser ships in close coordination with the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Ministry of Defence, Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Navy to provide security to the shipments carrying fertilisers to India. “So far, 7 ships carrying Fertilisers have been rerouted from the Red Sea. Further, in the light of ongoing disturbances in the Red Sea, a committee has been constituted in the department to examine the matters related to the Red Sea Crisis,” the minister said.

India imports fertilisers to meet its needs. Khuba informed that a Fertilizer Control Room (FCR) has also been set up in the Department of Fertilizers, wherein fertiliser companies, which are facing problems due to the Red Sea crisis, may report their issues.

The issues reported by the companies are placed before the committee for necessary action, he added.

In 2022-23, the domestic production of fertilisers stood at 485.29 lakh tonnes, while imports were 187.81 lakh tonnes. The total demand for fertilisers stood at 628.26 lakh tonnes last fiscal.

The situation around the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait, a crucial shipping route for traders connecting the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea to the Indian Ocean, has escalated due to attacks by Yemen-based Houthi militants in December 2023.

Because of this, the shipping costs have jumped, and the consignments are taking more time to reach Europe and the US as the ships are taking the Cape of Good Hope route, encircling Africa.

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