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Sonowal updates on Green Freight Corridor

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NEW DELHI : The government has accorded high priority to building greater synergies between the Major Ports and Non-Major Ports in order to promote coastal trade and to provide sustainable, cost-effective and efficient Intermodal & Multimodal customer solutions.  By doing so, the Ministry aims to provide seaborne connectivity to the trade and industries in the hinterland, reduce congestion on the road and rail besides bringing down logistics cost.  Green freight Corridor-2 service started from Cochin to Beypore and Azhikkal ports.  Various steps are being taken to promote coastal trade and to provide sustainable, cost effective and multimodal customer solutions.  This will minimize congestion on the road and rail traffic.  However, efforts are being made to make costal shipping more economical and effective.  At present Green freight corridor service is operated by Round the coast Private Limited, Mumbai twice a week the vessel calling at Beypore and Azhikkal ports with containers.

The steps taken to promote coastal shipping includes:

  1. licensing relaxation to foreign flag vessels for carrying trans-shipment containers, empty containers, fertilizers and agricultural, fisheries, animal husbandry and horticultural commodities on coastal routes;
  2. minimum 40% discount is offered by major ports on vessels and cargo related charges to coastal vessels;
  3. prioritization in berthing of coastal ships at major ports, subsidy to Indian flagged vessels for carrying  Public Sector Unit’s cargo; and
  4. GST Reduced on Banker Fuel from 18% to 5 %.

There are 63 Projects worth more than Rs 17,000 Cr. identified under Sagarmala Programme in the state of Kerala for enhancing the infrastructure related to Port led Industrialization, Port Modernization, Port Connectivity enhancement, Coastal Community Development & Coastal Shipping, and Inland Waterways.  These projects have been undertaken by Central Ministries, lWAl, Indian Railways, State Government and Major Ports etc.

There are 6 projects worth Rs. 128Cr partially funded through Sagarmala Programme. Out of these 6 Projects, 4 projects worth Rs 104 Cr have been completed and 2 projects worth Rs. 24 Cr. are under implementation.

This information was given by Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shri Sarbananda Sonowal in a written reply in Rajya Sabha .

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