The government of India is currently developing plans to increase overall tonnage capacity at major ports from 800 million tons to 1.6 billion tons over the next five years, according to Indian shipping minister Nitin Gadkari.
Infrastructure developments are the key focus for prime minister Narendra Modi, who is looking for private investment to progress the planned improvements.
Gadkari said: “The 12 major ports have already drawn up an action plan for an additional capacity of 500 million tons, with projects of 350 million tons due to commence during this fiscal year (2014/15).”
Gadkari explained that the country’s GDP could be boosted by 2% if key infrastructure sectors are developed to their potential.”
Emphasis was placed on improved operational efficiency and connectivity, not only to remain competitive with other ports, but also to speed up the movement of cargo and ease congestion at harbours.
During the 2013/2014 fiscal year ending in March, India’s major ports handled 555.5 million tons of cargo – up 1.78% from the previous year.