The government has announced that it intends to spend Rs 70,000 crore under Sagarmala Project to make the major ports more efficient and reduce logistics cost in India. The new target for investment in the port sector was made by the Shipping, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari, who chaired the first meeting of the National Sagarmala Apex Committee (NSAC). Once implemented, this will result in cargo traffic increasing three-fold while the ports will also go under performance audit.
According to Gadkari, the sector has a huge multiplier effect and that shipping and highways sectors together have the potential to add 2 per cent to the country’s overall output. In March 2015, the GOI approved the concept and institutional framework of the Sagarmala project under which the the NSAC was established.
The NSAC has been envisioned to provide an overall policy guidance and high level coordination on the national perspective plan. The NSAC panel comprises the NITI Aayog vice chairman, union ministers from stakeholder ministries and chief ministers of 10 maritime states- Andhra Pradesh, Goa, Gujarat, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.
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