Andhra Pradesh, with its long coastline, is expected to lead the country’s port development

Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal stressed that the Multimodal Transport System (MMTS) is the future of logistics and said Andhra Pradesh with its long coastline is ready to move ahead in the development race.

In his keynote speech at the closing of the two-day Global Investors Summit 2023 in Visakhapatnam on Saturday, he said AP plays an important role in the country’s port-led development.

Under the Sagarmala program, more than 110 projects worth around 1.1 billion have been identified for implementation in AP. Of these, 35 projects valued at 32,000 crores have already been completed and 14 projects valued at 2,500 crores are in progress. For uplifting the fishing community, five fishing port projects worth 1,500 crores have been sanctioned for AP under the Sagarmala scheme, he said.

“Visakhapatnam Port has shown healthy cargo growth of over 7.5% this fiscal year. According to the instructions of the Union Ministry, the port is in the process of transforming itself into a rental port. The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Authority (JNPA) was fully converted into a lessor port in 2022 and other ports can adhere to it until 2030,” he said.

Six projects were awarded to the Port of Vizag in January 2023 with an investment of 658 crores and a further six projects are in the pipeline with an investment potential of 1,250 crores. The completion of these projects will increase port capacity by about 37 million tons per year, he added.

The Ports Ministry, together with the Fisheries Ministry, is upgrading fishing ports across India to international standards, 31 of which are being developed under the Sagarmala program and Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana.

“Visakhapatnam Fishing Port is being upgraded at a cost of 151 crores, which will improve the quality of life for local fishermen. Visakhapatnam Port is nearing completion of the international cruise terminal with an investment of 97 crores and is expected to be operational by April 2023,” he said.

The Ministry of Ports has established a Center of Excellence in Maritime and Shipbuilding, the first of its kind in Asia with 18 laboratories, aiming to bridge the skills gap between academic and industrial requirements at the Indian Maritime University campus in Visakhapatnam. he added.

Union Minister for Tourism and Culture G Kishan Reddy said Andhra Pradesh has a competitive advantage in sectors like marine products and shrimps, drugs and pharmaceuticals, electronics, petroleum, technical goods etc.

“The total investment cost for Visakhapatnam smart city is 3,000 crore. There is a clear opportunity for the state and center to work together to take AP to new heights. This is done in the true spirit of competitive federalism, where states compete to attract investment and build infrastructure. The center has continuously supported AP so that it can achieve growth,” he said. Source: Indian Express

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