India looks for $13bn to fund Sagar Mala port upgrade programme

Having committed itself to spending $180bn to modernise the country’s  ports and surrounding infrastructure by way of its  Sagar Mala port expansion initiative, the Indian authorities have been wooing visitors at this week’s  biennial three-day Vibrant Gujarat investment summit with a series of presentations aimed at raising $13bn to fund as many as  40 projects ranging from port and connectivity  upgrades to express highways and coastal community developments.
In its  2010 report Transforming India’s logistics infrastructureMcKinsey’s estimated that inefficiencies attributable to poor transport  infrastructure  was costing India around $45bn each year, or more than 4.3% of GDP and that, with the volume of freight traffic expected to grow by 250% over the ensuing decade that figure could rise to around $200bn by 2020.
This and other warnings of an  impending logistics meltdown have not gone unheeded and in 2015 the government launched the Sagar Mala initiative, committing New Delhi to investing $180bn in the construction of six new modern ports located respectively at Vadhaven (Mumbai), Sagar Island (Kolkata), Paradip Outer Harbour (500km south of Kolkata in the state of Odisha), Sirkhazi (Tamil Nadu) and Belekeri (in the western state of Karnataka, down the coast from Goa). The initiative also provides for capacity expansion at a further 142 ports; 52 rail-port projects;  79 highway upgrades; the development of 14 coastal economic zones for port-led industrialization; a heavy haul rail corridor between the Odishan coal hub at  Talcher  and Paradip; and 29 industrial clusters scattered across the sub-continent.
As well as radically reducing inefficiencies and boosting India’s industrial capacity the  initiative  also designed  also help increase transshipment  revenue. Due to poor and inadequate facilities as much as 25% of Indian cargo is currently transshipped through Colombo and Singapore. 
$60bn has been committed to the Sagar Mala so far, according to a progress report made public by the government last November.

Source: joc