The Ministry of Shipping is working on a plan to develop a National Grid for Ports based on synergy between the Major and Minor ports in the country. Shri Mansukh Mandaviya, MoS (I/C) for Shipping and MoS Chemical and Fertilizers announced this while addressing the media after the 17th Meeting of Maritime States Development Council (MSDC) in New Delhi.

The Minister said that there are 204 Minor ports in the country, of which only 44 are currently functional. All these ports have been centers of maritime activity in the past. If revived, they can once again become important centers of sea trade. Shri Mandaviya said that the Government is looking at developing synergy between the Major and Minor ports. so together they can bring port-led development in the country.

The move will help increase India’s export-import (EXIM) cargo, Shipping minister Mansukh Mandaviya told reporters here on Tuesday.

At the 17th meeting of the maritime state development council, the apex advisory body for the development of the sector, representatives from maritime states, shipping ministry came together to discuss ways to increase coastal shipping and develop minor ports, among other issues.

The meeting focussed on the fact that along with major ports, minor ports should also be developed in the country, Mandaviya told reporters.

A plan for the development of minor ports will be sent to states within six months. They can decide whether to develop them on their own or through the public-private partnership (PPP) mode, Mandaviya said.

Of the 204 minor ports in the country, only 44 are functional. The committee will assess the potential of each minor port, its downstream industry, agricultural potential, and will then suggest a plan to states for their comprehensive development.

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