India Announces $82B Port Infrastructure Plan

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Published Mar 2, 2021 10:25 PM by The Maritime Executive

India's government has announced a long term $82 billion plan to invest in the nation's seaports. Speaking at the Maritime India Summit on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for massive public and private commitments to improve infrastructure for maritime trade. 

"As many as 574 projects at a cost of $82 billion . . . have been identified under the Sagarmala project for implementation [through] 2035," said Modi. 

Pointing to the possibilities for foreign investors, he said that India's ports ministry has identified an additional $30 billion worth of investment opportunities for about 400 different projects. "We will encourage private investment in the port sector . . . Invest in our ports. Invest in our people. Let India be your preferred trade destination. Let Indian ports be your port of call for trade and commerce," he said. 

The investment plans include developing renewable power to supply more than half of the energy needs of India's ports by 2030, Modi said. 

Modi also highlighted his government's investments in inland waterway transportation, and said that it plans to continue to boost inland navigation. “Ours is a government that is investing in waterways in a way that was never seen before," he said. "We aim to operate 23 waterways by 2030."

The Indian government's maritime ambitions also extend to vessel scrapping, a key source of recycled steel for Indian industry. India's Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Mansukh Mandaviya highlighted plans to expand the nation's share of the ship demolition market to 50 pecent of the global total, up from about 30 percent today.