Press Trust of india

Govt identifies 1,537 projects worth Rs 6.5 lakh crore under Sagarmala programme

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New Delhi: With focus on port-led development, more than 1,500 projects worth around Rs 6.5 lakh crore have been identified for implementation as part of the Sagarmala programme, Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal said on Friday.

Sonowal further said that for holistic development of coastal districts, 567 projects have been identified under convergence mode with an estimated cost of Rs 58,700 crore.

“As many as 1,537 projects at an estimated cost of around Rs 6.5 lakh crore have been identified for implementation as part of the Sagarmala programme,” the minister for ports, shipping and waterways said at a press conference after chairing the meeting of the National Sagarmala Apex Committee (NSAC).

Sagarmala programme is aimed at accelerating economic development in the country by harnessing the potential of India’s 7,500 kilometres long coastline and 14,500 kilometres of potentially navigable waterways announced by the prime minister in 2014 and approved by the Union Cabinet on March 25, 2015.

The minister said that the committee reviewed the progress of the Sagarmala programme and deliberated on various agendas.

He said there are 802 projects worth Rs. 5.5 lakh crore under the Sagarmala programme targeted to be executed by 2035.

“Out of which, 202 projects worth Rs 99,281 crore have been completed,” Sonowal said, adding that a total of 29 projects worth Rs 45,000 crore have been successfully implemented under Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model, thus, reducing the financial burden on the exchequer.

According to the minister, additional 32 PPP projects worth Rs 51,000 crore are currently being implemented.

Further, more than 200 projects worth Rs 2.12 lakh crore are under construction and expected to be completed in two years’ time, he added.

Sonowal said the average container turnaround time at major ports in the country has come down to 27.22 hours in 2021-22, as against 35.21-odd hours in 2014-15.

According to an official statement, the ministry has till date funded 140 projects to the tune of Rs 8,748 crore and is reviewing additional proposals sent by various state governments.

The statement said more than 200 locations have been identified for development of floating jetties and 50 locations form part of the phase 1 implementation.

It also pointed out that traffic handled at major ports witnessed a rise of 6.94 per cent during FY22 over the preceding year.

The meeting was attended by Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal, Minister of Civil Aviation Jyotiraditya Scindia and Minister of Railways Ashwini Vaishnav, among others.

Speaking at the meeting, Gadkari said India’s logistic cost is around 14-16 per cent, while the logistic cost in China is around 8 per cent, and in case of European countries, it is 12 per cent.

“If we reduce our logistic cost to 8 per cent then it will help in accelerating our economic growth,” Gadkari added.

NSAC provides policy directions and guidance for port-led development programme Sagarmala and reviews its implementation.

It was constituted on May 13, 2015 by the Union Cabinet, and is chaired by the minister for ports, shipping & waterways with Cabinet ministers from stakeholder central ministries as well as chief ministers and administrators of maritime states and Union Territories as members.

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