Bhubaneswar: Odisha has strategic potential to grow as a coastal shipping hub in eastern India, Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra said Tuesday.
Mohapatra said this while inaugurating the 2-day Summit on Prime Minister Gati-Shakti Multimodal Maritime organized under the joint aegis of Paradip Port Authority, state and central Government.
“Odisha would soon become one of the biggest hubs in coastal shipping of minerals and finished products,” the chief secretary said.
Noting that Odisha is a maritime state and has strategic location for coastal shipping, Mohapatra said that the state’s coastline is quite suitable for development of deep ports. The eastern part of India including Odisha is growing at a fast rate.
He said Odisha is supplying coal, iron ore and manganese to many states in the country and the growth rate will be faster in coming years.
He said the PM Gati-Shakti is a Pan Indian platform that would address to the critical issues of reducing logistic cost of mineral transport substantially, and would accelerate the growth of coastal shipping. It is a comprehensive and converged platform of all the related departments of both state and central government along with other major stakeholders.
With uploading of information by all concerned, the planning and decision making for the sector would be more perfect and faster, he said, adding that it would also bring the real ease of doing business for investors.
Mohapatra assured that the state government would extend all help for implementation of the recommendations of this two day summit.
Joining the summit Divisional Railway Manager, Khurda, Rinkesh Roy said, “East Coast Railway is No-1 freight loading zone in the entire Railways. Paradip is the 2nd largest port in terms of the volume handled through rail link network. The region has huge mining and industrial belt”.
Roy said the East Coast Railway was on its path for augmentation of its rail-network in Odisha from industrial points to the port.
Joint Secretary, Sagarmala Projects, Bhusan Kumar gave a blue print of the converged mechanism put in place for successful implementation of Gati Shakti projects.
He said that the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways prioritized improvement of connectivity to more than 50 plus non-major operative ports through PM Gati Shakti. In this comprehensive port connectivity plan, more than 107 connectivity gaps were identified for abridging port connectivity.
Jayant Singh, Vice Chairman, IWAI (inland waterways authority of India) said “Odisha with its long stretches of water mass across different regions posses immense potential for development of inland waterways”.
Chairman Paradip Port Trust P L Haranadh said, that Paradip Port in its 56 years of cargo handling service would attain a record 125 MMT annual traffic in FY 2022-23.
“During the Amrit Kal, Paradip will be the Port of the Millennium by having a capacity of more than 500 MMT by 2047. PM Gati-Shakti would be the prime mover of this transformation”, he added.
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