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Nitin Gadkari and Piyush Goyal Flag Off maiden Voyage of Concorvessel Via Coastal Shipping

New Delhi: Coastal voyage of a vessel of Container Corporation of India (Concor) was flagged off by Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Shipping and Piyush Goyal, Union Minister for Railways and Coal from Kandla through video link on January 10.

Nitin Gadkari and Piyush Goyal Flag Off maiden Voyage

CONCOR is a PSU under Ministry of railways. The vesselSSL Mumbai is sailing from Kandla Port to Tuticorin via Mangalore and Cochin. This is a unique example of multi-modal logistics solution through integrated rail and coastal movement. With this CONCOR will start coastal movement of containers as a weekly service on this route, moving about 1400 containers.

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Speaking on the occasion Nitin Gadkari called this a historical day for the transport sector in India, and expressed confidence that this modal shift in the logistics chain was an important beginning that would help to bring down logistics costs and make Indian goods more competitive in the global markets in the very near future.

India has huge potential for enhancing modal share of coastal shipping and inland water navigation. The current share is only 7% unlike countries like China with 24% & Germany -11% , he said.

The Minister said the combination of railways and coastal shipping is a win-win situation for both modes of transport. It will release capacity for railways to carry others goods and facilitate more cost effective movement of commodities like steel, cement etc through coastal route, thereby enhancing the coastal trade basket.

Gadkari also said that besides being economical, coastal shipping is environmentally friendly and can result in 6% reduction in harmful chemicals and pollutants in India.With estimated diversion of about 5% cargo to coastal shipping, the reduced traffic on rail and road can result in saving of Rs. 230 billion.
With the total potential to move 9 million tones of cargo, CONCOR is expected to move about 2700 containers per month in the first phase to Kandla for onward carriage by coastal route to southern ports like Cochin.

Under Sagarmala, the flagship programme of Ministry of Shipping, coastal shipping is being promoted and aims to achieve 12 % share of coastal shipping & inland waterways in India’s overall modal mix by 2025. Relaxation of Cabotage law enabling foreign flag vessels to carry agri-commodities, fertilizers and containers between Indian ports; creation of coastal infrastructure at ports; simplification of documentation and procedures; and 40% discount on vessel and cargo related charges are some of the steps being taken to promote movement of coastal cargo. According to the National Perspective Plan of Sagarmala, a total potential of 320 MT per annum by 2025 of movement by coastal/inland waterways has been identified.

Speaking on the occasion, Piyush Goyal congratulated CONCOR & Ministry of Shipping for this joint venture. He said railways has introduced many new reforms in the last 4.5 years. This is another first in the series of reforms.



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