The Shipping Ministry is undertaking a major effort in organizing the first global Maritime India Summit 2016 to be held from 14 - 16 April, encouraged by the progress made in the last two years to revive the shipping sector and to ensure that the untapped potential works to the advantage of adding to the GDP of the country.
At the media launch of the Maritime India Summit 2016, Shri Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways and Shipping said in the coming years the government is planning to create 40 lakh direct employment and 60 lakh indirect employment opportunity in the maritime sector.
Keeping in mind the fact that those countries which have a well-developed water way have prospered the Minister pointed out that one of the hurdles in boosting the manufacturing sector is the logistics cost which is around 18% compared with 8-10% in China and 10-12% in European countries.
If the waterways and ports are developed it will bring down the logistics cost, which will in turn boost the exports from the country.
All Chief Ministers of coastal states have been invited to the Summit with Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh CMs having already confirmed their attendance for the event.
Shri Gadkari also addressed several questions from the media persons:
On Bihar government's objection to the Allahabad - Haldia project:
The Minister pointed out that nothing has been done on which the Bihar government can raise its objection. No intrusion into the state government's rights have been made. The project aims at improving the environment, ensuring water level is maintained in the Ganga River to provide for navigation and for farmers to irrigate their fields. The aim is to facilitate transport and bring down the logistics cost.
On how will the government cooperate with private maritime organisations:
The Minister said that maritime sector has so much potential that there will be enough work for those who want to explore opportunities. There are many initiatives that can be taken but keeping in mind how to generate employment. The Minister pointed out the need for an economy that will generate jobs.
On Security concerns associated with increased tourism:
Shri Gadkari said that his Ministry will cooperate with the Coastal Security Guards under the Home Ministry.