Budget 2023 pushes the development of Coastal Shipping

Budget 2023 pushes the development of Coastal Shipping

One of the four key areas the government has identified to increase the effectiveness of logistics and cost competitiveness for maritime logistics is the modal shift of cargo employing coastal shipping.

According to the Maritime India Vision 2030, private parties should be encouraged to operate roll-on, roll-off (Ro-Ro) and ferry service. A PPP framework will improve both parties’ overall financial, operational, and risk-taking capacity for successfully achieving project objectives. Ro-Ro port operations, fleet operations, and maintenance have all engaged private parties globally. However, according to the Vision document, private companies could first be employed in India through operations and maintenance (O&M) or management-based contracts.

Modal shift from road-based to Coastal Shipping

The potential for shipping commodities along the Indian coast instead of over the ocean is enormous. Inland and coastal rivers offer environmentally friendly and sustainable methods of cargo transportation. Only about 6% of the country’s freight modes are currently coastal and inland waterways.To ensure a transition away from door-to-door services offered by road and rail-road modes, first-mile/last-mile connections, lead times, and costs must be taken into consideration while developing water-based transport.

To provide the most affordable and hassle-free logistics solutions for end-user industries, an integrated development strategy is necessary.

Coastal Shipping: Safer, Smarter, Sustainable

In the past few years, the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways has taken a number of actions to ease coastal shipping :

  • Encouraging the development of specific coastal berths 
  • Lowering port tariffs for coastal cargo
  • Providing green-channel clearance for coastal cargo
  • Giving priority to berthing for coastal vessels
  • Relaxing cabotage rules to increase vessel availability

Promotion of green economy: Budget 2023

Through the PPP model and viability gap funding, Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman’s budget for 2023 proposes to promote coastal shipping for both passengers and cargo. Sitharaman declared that waterways will receive emphasis because they are an inexpensive and energy-efficient mode of transportation. The Budget 2023 aims to strengthen India’s emphasis on sustainable growth. To lead the way for a green industrial and economic transition, India is vigorously pursuing the “panchamrit” and “net-zero carbon” emissions by 2070. Reduced air and noise pollution as well as lower logistics costs for user-end industries are a few of the indirect economic advantages that come with improved water-based transportation. Improvement of water-based transport will have indirect economic benefits such as reduced air and noise pollution and lowered logistics costs for user-end industries.