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12 Jan 2018

Mumbai to soon get its 1st international cruise terminal in MbPT

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The Mumbai Port Trust will be reclaiming 350 hectares to create the world's largest garden in Mumbai", Nitin Gadkari said, speaking after the ground-breaking ceremony of a Rs 300-crore worldwide cruise terminal in the country's financial capital. Minister for Shipping and Ports Nitin Gadkari and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis have in fact laid the foundation stone for the city's upcoming worldwide cruise terminal, which is reportedly going to span across an area of more than 4.15 lakh sq ft. The swank new global cruise terminal which will come up in the Mumbai port is slated to cost Rs 300 crore, and will have all facilities like an airport with separate arrival and departure lounges and cater to around 700,000 tourists annually arriving or departing by cruise liners. Mr Gadkari asked chief minister Devendra Fadnavis to grant special permission to the MbPT to ensure speedy approvals for the garden. Addressing the gathering, Gadkari said the terminal is being built at the cost of 6500 Cr. Mr Gadkari said in order to carry out a slew of citizen-centric activities as part of the Eastern Waterfront project, it is necessary to accord the status of special planning authority (SPA) to the Mumbai Port Trust. The terminal will have the capacity to host large cruise ships that ferry up to 5,000 passengers and will have a total capacity of 700,000 passengers per year. According to the cruise tourism roadmap prepared by M/s.Bermelo & Ajamil and Ernst & Young, close to 4 million passengers are expected to visit India in the coming years, and 3 million passengers are expected to take cruises from the Mumbai Port. The Mumbai port project will be undertaken in two phases, with the first phase, which aims to cater to 200,000 passengers, scheduled to be completed by the end of 2018. Post the completion by the end of 2019, the new terminal will cater to more than seven lakh passengers, with facilities on par with worldwide standards. During the initial stages, the container yard and the shallow berth will be operated by JNPT, and later on, an operator will be appointed through a public-private partnership (PPP). The MoU also provides for expansion of the ship fix capacity within the Indira Dock that may include setting up of a Floating Drydock (FDD) and upgrading existing facility at Hughes Dry Dock (HDD), thereby enhancing the existing ship fix capacity in Mumbai area. The tenders are to be issued in the next month. For now, New Sewree Warehouse at MbPT, spread over 24,000 square metres, has been earmarked for the project.

12 Jan 2018

Shri Mansukh Mandavia inspects Kolkata Port Trust and IWAI Jetty

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Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Chemicals and Fertilisers, Shri Mansukh Mandaviya inspected the facilities and ongoing projects at Kolkata Port Trust and GR Jetty of Inland Waterways Authority of India yesterday. He is on a 2 day visit to Kolkata and Haldia. Shri Mandavia visited Netaji Subhas Dock at Kolkata Port Trust where he stressed upon the need for strengthening the Dry Dock facilities. He also inaugurated the renovated Birsa Munda Sarani and Sonapur Road of the Port, and participated in the tree plantation activities organised by the Port Authorities. He later flagged off the state-of-the–art Seagoing Survey Launch (River Pearl-1) of KoPT. The launch is fitted with hull mounted inboard transducers and equipped with modern survey software for online data acquisition and processing along with AIS and radar. At the G.R. Jetty of Inland Waterways Authority of India Shri Mandavia flagged off the IWAI tug vessel which has a capacity for towing 2 vessels of 1000 tonnes each. He also surveyed the ongoing work on NW-I from G.R. Jetty to Howrah Bridge. Briefing the media later on he said that the Ministry is going to start Ro-Ro Ferry Services from BISN Jetty to Botanical Garden/Falta and BISN Jetty to Sankrail Jetty which will be a boon for the people of the twin cities of Howrah and Kolkata. He called upon the officials of Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) to work towards connecting the North Eastern Region to the rest of the country through waterways. During the course of discussion, the Minister also suggested that cadets/trainee nautical officers should be given the opportunity for onboard training. He also emphasised on regular monitoring of the Maritime Training Institute to ensure placement of cadets passing out from the training institute. Shri Mandavia also reviewed the ongoing projects of National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) and Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) in the state of West Bengal. He directed the officers to expedite the works of delayed projects and give proper attention to land acquisition matters in close coordination with the concerned Revenue Officers for timely delivery of the project for the benefit of the people of the state. The Minister also visited Bengal Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (BCPL) and National Institute of Pharmaceuticals Education and Research (NIPER) situated in Manicktala area and interacted with the officers and addressed students. Shri Mandavia is visiting Haldia Dock Complex of Kolkata Port Trust at Haldia today Thereafter, he will also visit the Central Institute of Plastic Engineering and Technology (CIPET) at Haldia and will interact with the faculty and students of the institute.

11 Jan 2018

Ministry of Railway launches Smart Freight Operation Optimisation & Real Time Information (SFOORTI) Application.

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In a major digital initiative to help plan the traffic flows and optimize freight operations, Ministry of Railways have launched Smart Freight Operation Optimisation & Real Time Information (SFOORTI) App for Freight Managers which provides features for monitoring and managing freight business using Geographic Information System (GIS) Views and Dashboard. Salient features of SFOORTI Application are as below: With this application, movement of freight trains on Geographic Information System (GIS) view can be tracked. Both passenger and freight trains can be tracked over Zones/Divisions/ Sections in single GIS View. Freight business can be monitored. Comparative Analysis of Zonal/Divisional Traffic. Analysis of new traffic captured and traffic lost. This app provides a Bird’s eye view of all Freight Assets in a single window. Provides end to end Rake movement on Geospatial view Expected Traffic at Interchange points to evaluate daily performance can be viewed. Performance of each zone and divisions with respect to loading and utilization of freight assets can be viewed. Sectional performance monitoring for sections, divisions and zones shall help in traffic routing. Freight terminal and sidings can be better monitored to ensure better turnaround of rakes. FEATURES OF SFOORTI APPLICATION: Freight Operation Information System Map View–A Geographic Information System (GIS) based monitoring and management tool has been designed and developed in CRIS which provides layered views of freight trains on Indian Railways network which can help plan the traffic flows and optimize freight operations. The FOIS Map View has been designed to cater to Divisional, Zonal and Board levels of management for improved freight operations. It provides Geo-Spatial view of freight train performances, some of which are: Position of all freight trains on Indian Railways Network on basis of their last reporting in system. Movement of freight trains from one zone/division to another zone/division across IR. Position of Rakes on the network detailing commodity wise loading. Position of all freight stock on Indian Railways - both loaded and empty on the network. Monitor Inward/ Expected traffic flow at Interchange points along with real time monitoring of forecast for day against actual interchange. Indicates new traffic Origination-Destination (OD) captured over IR network. Indicates Rakes detaining beyond permissible free time on the network. Loading trends of major commodities is available identifying the loading performances of terminals and their Origination-Destination (OD) on the network. Section wise speed performance of freight trains across the network which is updated on real time basis. This is done by making use of real time sectional running data captured through Control Office Application and comparing it with the historical freight running data to work out the level of performance in the section on real time basis. B. Forecasted Rakes Awaiting Interchange: Monitoring of all the loads, which have been forecasted for the divisional interchange, but the same interchange has not yet reported. Forecasted Loads Awaiting Interchange are plotted on two colour themes, based on their divisional interchange direction. C. Stock Specific / Commodity specific Rake Position: Position of Rakes for Specific Type of Stock can be viewed. Loaded and Empty Rakes of specific Rake Types are plotted on the Indian Railways network map in Different colours. Further drill down along with load path can also be viewed on the Geo-Spatial view. D. New Origination-Destination Added in IR: Monitoring of New Origination Destination flows captured during the specified period in comparison with those loaded in previous 3 years data. Detail are represented either Commodity wise or Origination Destination (O-D wise). E. Loading Trends for Major Commodities: Monitoring of Loadings across Indian Railways for major commodities during a period. Terminals are presented on the GIS View, with different commodity shown in different colour. Further drill down is also provided to view Individual Origination-Destination (O-D Flows). F. Freight Train Performance: Performance of Freight Train Running on Indian Railways Sections can be viewed through this option for each working shift. Performance is determined through comparison of current sectional speed with the benchmark average speed. Section Performance is represented as Below Average, Average or Good based on section performance against benchmarks (Shown in different colours). Entire section is plotted on the map on its congestion colour theme.

10 Jan 2018

Full List Of FDI Amendments Approved By Union Cabinet

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The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister gave its approval to a number of amendments to the FDI Policy. These are intended to liberalise and simplify the FDI policy so as to provide ease of doing business in the country, the government said. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is a major driver of economic growth and a source of non-debt finance for the economic development of the country. During the year 2014-15, total FDI inflows received were $45.15 billion as against $36.05 billion in 2013-14. During 2015-16, the country received total FDI of $55.46 billion. In the financial year 2016-17, total FDI of $60.08 billion has been received, which is an all-time high. Single Brand Retail: Extant FDI policy on Single Brand Retail Trading (SBRT) allows 49% FDI under automatic route and FDI beyond 49% and up to 100% through Government approval route. It has now been decided to permit 100% FDI under automatic route for SBRT. It has been decided to permit the single brand retail trading entity to set off its incremental sourcing of goods from India for global operations during initial 5 years, beginning 1 April of the year of the opening of the first store against the mandatory sourcing requirement of 30% of purchases from India. Civil Aviation: As per the extant policy, foreign airlines are allowed to invest under Government approval route in the capital of Indian companies operating scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services, up to the limit of 49% of their paid-up capital. However, this provision was presently not applicable to Air India, thereby implying that foreign airlines could not invest in Air India. It has now been decided to do away with this restriction and allow foreign airlines to invest up to 49% under approval route in Air India subject to the conditions that: 1)Foreign investment(s) in Air India including that of foreign Airline(s) shall not exceed 49% either directly or indirectly 2)Substantial ownership and effective control of Air India shall continue to be vested in Indian National. Construction Development: It has been decided to clarify that real-estate broking service does not amount to real estate business and is, therefore, eligible for 100% FDI under the automatic route. Power Exchanges: Extant policy provides for 49% FDI under automatic route in Power Exchanges registered under the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (Power Market) Regulations, 2010. However, FII/FPI purchases were restricted to secondary market only. It has now been decided to do away with this provision, thereby allowing FIIs/FPIs to invest in Power Exchanges through the primary market as well. Pharmaceuticals: FDI policy on Pharmaceuticals sector inter-alia provides that definition of the medical device as contained in the FDI Policy would be subject to amendment in the Drugs and Cosmetics Act. As the definition as contained in the policy is complete in itself, it has been decided to drop the reference to Drugs and Cosmetics Act from FDI policy. Further, it has also been decided to amend the definition of ‘medical devices’ as contained in the FDI Policy. Regarding audit firms: The extant FDI policy does not have any provisions in respect of specification of auditors that can be appointed by the Indian investee companies receiving foreign investments. It has been decided to provide in the FDI policy that wherever the foreign investor wishes to specify a particular auditor/audit firm having an international network for the Indian investee company, then an audit of such investee companies should be carried out as joint audit wherein one of the auditors should not be part of the same network.

08 Jan 2018

Floating Restuarant

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With a view to open up the Mumbai Harbour for recreational activities for the Mumbaikars and the scores of tourists visiting Mumbai, the Mumbai Port Trust had allotted the licence for the operations of two floating restaurants in the harbor off the Gateway of India and one floating restaurant in the Girgaon Chowpatty Bay, about 9 months ago. There being no such ships available in India, import was the only way out. Mumbaikars will be very shortly able to experience the floating restaurants as two of them have arrived at Mumbai Port Trust on 6th January. After completion of its interiors and sea trials, these two floating restaurants will anchored- one each in seas off Gateway of India and Girgaon Chowpatty.

08 Jan 2018

Dp World Cochin Completes Yet Another Successfull Year

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Global trade enabler DP World operated India Gateway Terminal Pvt. Ltd. (IGTPL) has recorded yet another successful year of exemplary growth. The country’s first international transshipment gateway registered an annual throughput of more than 532,000 TEU between January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017, delivering an astounding growth of 11% compared to the previous year. The terminal also recorded their highest monthly throughput of more than 51,000 TEU in October 2017. DP World Cochin introduced a number on initiatives providing smart trade solutions and adding value to the supply chain by engaging with their customers and stakeholders. In their commitment towards facilitating ease of doing business, the terminal has successfully introduced a new digital portal by Bharat Trade which enables smooth paperless transaction and offers a single window to customers and ensures digital exchange of data on real-time bases. DP World Cochin has improved its hinterland connectivity which has benefitted the local importers and exporters from the states of Kerala, parts of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. IGTPL has resiliently accentuated its leadership position in container trade, offering direct services from Australia, Fareast, South East Asia and Middle East to Cochin and from Cochin to Fareast, Middle East, Europe and Mediterranean. Mr. Jibu Kurien Itty, CEO, DP World Cochin, said, “At DP World Cochin, our focus continues to be a catalyst in providing faster and cost effective trade solutions to our customers. We continuously work towards enhancing terminal efficiency with efforts channelized towards understanding customer needs. In 2017, we have registered 11% growth outpacing the South Indian ports market growth rate of 9%. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers and partners for the trust they have shown in us and our ability to service them. We are confident that the year 2018 will reinforce our position as the most efficient terminal in the southern region.” Overall, the terminal delivered robust performance in the container trade and continues to transform the supply chain. The terminal’s strong portfolio and their flexibility to introduce new services is a result of their highly skilled workforce and an excellent in-house developed terminal operating system ‘Zodiac’. The terminal continues to be highly efficient and productive with truck turnaround time on an average of 27 minutes and records an average Gross Crane Rate (GCR) of 31 moves per hour. DP World Cochin will soon be introducing RFID based automated gate management system to further enhance the terminal efficiency, and to facilitate the ease of doing business. Some of the major highlights for DP World Cochin in the year 2017 were: • DP World Cochin records an annual throughput of more than half million TEU • The terminal’s mainline service ‘Galex’ with vessel size of up to 6750 TEU and 14.5m draft scheduled its 200th call on December 31, 2017. • Another mainline service ‘NEMO’ with a vessel capacity of 7350 TEU and 14.5m draft made its 300th call in the same month. • The terminal also introduced new feeder services in the year 2017 and recorded a phenomenal 30% growth in the transshipment business. • The terminal received direct vessel calls from Africa during Cashew season. Some of the highlights in commodities exported were: • Garment exports from Cochin improved by a fascinating 64% • Coir and coir products reported 23% growth • Wood and wood products saw an improvement of 18% • Frozen Seafood and Tea exports increased by 15% In line with DP World’s ‘Our World, Our Future’ programme, IGTPL vigorously works in association with its local NGO partners, neighboring schools and hospitals with various activities such as health check-ups, cleanliness drives, blood donation drives, etc.

08 Jan 2018

Sops In The Works For States That Promote Exports: Commerce Minister

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The Commerce and Industry Ministry mulls incentives for States that play a proactive role in promoting exports as it will help boost economic growth, Union Minister said. Minister said Govt has sought the views of States on the issue, which was discussed during the third meeting of Council for Trade Development and Promotion. Trade contributes significantly in boosting the country’s economic growth, the Commerce and Industry Minister said. If the GDP of States rises, it will push the country’s growth, he said, adding that the focus should also be on districts’ GDP, which in turn would fuel the nation’s economy. Commerce Minister said the Ministry is in the process of preparing a strategy to promote overall exports and push the country’s industrial growth. When asked about the concerns raised by exporters in the meeting related to GST (Goods and Services Tax) refund, Minister said the issue was discussed and the Ministry is working on an ‘e-wallet’ system to resolve the matter. Before the implementation of the GST last July, exporters used to get exemptions from duties from the beginning. But now they have to pay first and then seek refund. Due to this process, the FIEO said about ?1,85,000 crore will get stuck with the government. Liquidity issues Under the proposed system, according to Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO), the problem of liquidity will be solved as exporters may use it like a running account where money will be debited from e-wallet when duty paid for supplies have to be undertaken and the amount will credited when the proof of exports is made available. The other issues which came up for discussion during the council’s meeting include role of foreign direct investment (FDI) in promoting exports and enhancing role of States to push shipments. State policies During the meeting, Minister said, Goa Chief Minister suggested that all States prepare their export policies. So far, only 14 States including Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Tripura and Jammu and Kashmir have done that. FIEO President suggested exemption from electricity duty under the GST regime and transport subsidy to increase competitiveness. Members of the council also deliberated on creating a framework for making the States active partners in boosting exports. The country’s merchandise exports during April-November 2017-18 increased 12.01 per cent to $196.48 billion.

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