Hyderabad, Mar 22: Navy officials here emphasised the need for use of Maritime medium to generate dividends for the country.
Speaking at seminar on ''Maritime Philosophy of India-Coastal Development of the Eastern Sea Board'' here yesterday in connection with Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly, Vice Chief of Indian Navy Vice Admiral V Bharatan said that maritime power is traditionally employed to control the use of the sea.
''The maritime power would enable us to use sea for our own purposes, while preventing others from using it. National economic well-being rests on maritime power'', he added.
He said India ranks 17 as maritime power, China ninth and Singapore third.
Mr Bharatan said India ranks 90 in trade and development, while China ranks 51 and Singapore 15. India has 12 major ports and 189 minor ports. China has 30 major ports and 1480 minor ports, while Singapore has only one major port.
Referring to energy resources, Rear Admiral Pradeep Chauhan said economy is crucially dependent on the seas. ''If engines of economic growth to go up, we have to increase ports'', he added.
He said 90 per cent of trade goes over sea, but the value India derives is only 77 per cent.
The Indian Navy has a major role to play in providing security along the oil routes, he added.
''Recent focus of oil and gas production has shifted from onshore to offshore. In addition, extensive investments are being made in the oil exploration sector, he added.
The Navy experts suggested that the Government set up State Maritime Board and generate fishing fleets to take up extensive fishing.
Though the State has an efficient Visakhapatnam port and ranks first in export of fish, there is a lot to be explored, they added.