Samsara Newsletter

Week 51, 2018 (Dec 15 - Dec 21)

Policy & Economy News

Double-digit growth in rupee exports in Nov.

E-Commerce Market growing at a rate of about 17% in 2018-19

India becoming world's fastest growing economy

Business News - The India Boom Factor

Exports from MSMEs growing

Till Nov., India imports 42 lakh t of urea

Commerce Ministry to set up Trade Promotion bodies in 15 Countries - Suresh Prabhu

Indian Tea Association inks pact with Chinese Tea body to boost exports

Indian sugar industry plans to boost exports to South Korea

Shipping News

Wan Hai adds Tuticorin Port call on CI2 service to tap Cabotage relaxations

2M Partners revamp Asia-Europe Networks

Transshipment volumes grow by 9% in November

Logistics News

Ministry of Railways offers 25 pc discount in haulage rate for transport of empty containers & empty flat wagons

Rail connectivity to ports a major focus

Indian Port News

APM Terminals Mumbai surpasses record 2 m TEUs in 2018

Krishnapatnam Port registers growth in transhipment volumes

Mumbai Port simultaneously handles two full rakes of sugar for export

Performance of Major Ports improves in key parameters

Policy & Economy News

Double-digit growth in rupee exports in Nov.
Exim News Service: New Delhi, Dec. 16 Top
Exports in November 2018 touched $ 26.50 billion, as compared to $ 26.29 billion in November 2017, exhibiting a positive growth of 0.80 per cent. In rupee terms, exports were Rs 1,90,429.46 crore (Rs.1.9 trillion) in November 2018 as compared to Rs 1,70,541.01 crore (Rs.1.7 trillion) in November 2017, registering a positive growth of 11.66 per cent.

Cumulative value of exports for the period April-November 2018-19 was $ 217.52 billion (Rs 15,14,369.74 crore) as against $ 194.93 billion (Rs 12,57,811.49 crore) during the period April-November 2017-18, registering a positive growth of 11.58 per cent in dollar terms (20.40 per cent in rupee terms).

Non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports in November 2018 were $ 18.57 billion as compared to $ 19.32 billion in November 2017, exhibiting a negative growth of 3.93 per cent. Non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports in April-November 2018-19 were $ 156.55 billion, as compared to $ 143.77 billion for the corresponding period in 2017-18, an increase of 8.89 per cent.


Imports in November 2018 were $ 43.17 billion (Rs 3,10,215.46 crore), which was 4.31 per cent higher in dollar terms and 15.55 per cent higher in rupee terms over imports of $ 41.39 billion (Rs 2,68,467.53 crore) in November 2017. Cumulative value of imports for the period April-November 2018-19 was $ 345.64 billion (Rs 24,07,273.87 crore), as against $ 301.31 billion (Rs 19,44,355.48 crore) during the period April-November 2017-18, registering a positive growth of 14.71 per cent in dollar terms (23.81 per cent in rupee terms).

Crude oil and non-oil imports

Oil imports in November 2018 were valued at $ 13.49 billion (Rs 96,955.56 crore), which was 41.31 per cent higher in dollar terms (56.55 per cent higher in rupee terms), compared to $ 9.55 billion (Rs 61,933.97 crore) in November 2017. Oil imports in April-November 2018-19 were $ 97.43 billion (Rs 6,79,769.26 crore) which was 49.14 per cent higher in dollar terms (61.21 per cent higher in rupee terms) compared to $ 65.33 billion (Rs 4,21,667.12 crore) over the same period last year.

Non-oil imports in November 2018 were estimated at $ 29.68 billion (Rs 2,13,259.90 crore) which was 6.79 per cent lower in dollar terms (3.26 per cent higher in rupee terms), compared to $ 31.84 billion (Rs 2,06,533.56 crore) in November 2017. Non-oil imports in April-November 2018-19 were $ 248.21 billion (Rs 17,27,504.61 crore) which was 5.18 per cent higher in dollar terms (13.45 per cent higher in rupee terms), compared to $ 235.98 billion (Rs 15,22,688.36 crore) in April-November 2017-18.

Non-oil and non-gold imports were $ 26.92 billion in November 2018, recording a negative growth of 5.78 per cent, as compared to non-oil and non-gold imports in November 2017. Non-oil and non-gold imports were $ 226.13 billion in April-November 2018-19, recording a positive growth of 6.27 per cent as compared to non-oil and non-gold imports in April-November 2017-18, informed an official release.

E-Commerce Market growing at a rate of about 17% in 2018-19
Capital Market - December 17 Top
Indian e-commerce market reached US$ 38.5 billion in 2018-19

As per the Economic Survey 2017-18, the electronic commerce (e-commerce) market in India is estimated at US$ 33 billion, with a 19.1% growth rate in 2016-17. As per the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) Strategic Review 2018, in the Information Technology and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) sector in India, the Indian e-commerce market was US$ 33 billion in 2017-18 and reached US$ 38.5 billion, growing at a rate of about 17% in the financial year 2018-19.

As per extant Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy, FDI up to 100% is permitted under automatic route in companies engaged in e-commerce provided that such company engaged only in Business to Business (B2B) e-commerce. Further, 100% FDI under automatic route is permitted in marketplace model of e-commerce but FDI is not permitted in inventory based model of e-commerce. Moreover, an entity is permitted to undertake retail trading through e-commerce under the following circumstances, subject to FDI policy provisions:

* A manufacturer is permitted to sell its products manufactured in India through e-commerce retail.

* A single brand retail trading entity operating through brick and mortar stores is permitted to undertake retail trading through e-commerce.

* A food product retail trading entity is allowed to undertake retail trading, including through e-commerce, in respect of food products manufactured and/or produced in India.

For foreign investment in sectors under automatic route, no prior permission of Government of India is required. FDI in retail has been allowed in a calibrated manner after having intensive consultations with stakeholders including concerned Ministries, Departments, State Governments, apex industry chambers, Associations and other organizations taking into consideration their views/comments.

India becoming world's fastest growing economy
Exim News Service - New Delhi, December 19 Top
The share of Indian economy in the world (measured as a ratio of India's GDP to world's GDP at current US$) increased from 2.6 per cent in 2014 to 3.2 per cent in 2017 (as per World Development Indicators database). The average share of Indian economy in the world during 1960 to 2013 was 1.8 per cent. The average growth of the economy during 2014-15 to 2017-18 was 7.3 per cent, the fastest among the major economies in the world.

The Indian economy is projected to be the fastest growing major economy in 2018-19 and 2019-20 (International Monetary Fund October 2018 database). This is borne by the GDP growth of 7.6 per cent in the first half of 2018-19.

As per the estimates available from Central Statistics Office, the per capita income [measured as per capita net national income (at current prices)] of the country increased from Rs 86,647 in 2014-15 to Rs 112,835 in 2017-18, recording a 30.2 per cent growth from 2014-15 to 2017-18.

This was highlighted by Mr Pon. Radhakrishnan, Minister of State for Finance, in Parliament this week, said a release.

Business News - The India Boom Factor

Exports from MSMEs growing
Exim News Service - New Delhi, December 17 Top
The growth of exports of products manufactured by MSME units has been 7.5 per cent during the financial year 2017-18. This was informed by Mr Giriraj Singh, MoS (I/C) for the Ministry of MSME, in the Lok Sabha. The Minister further informed that the growth had been -5.9 per cent and 4.8 per cent during 2015-16 and 2016-17, respectively.

He added that as per the information received from the Directorate-General of Commercial Intelligence & Statistics, the value of exports of MSME-related products has been $ 130,768.70 million, $ 137,068.80 million, $ 147,390.08 million, and $ 78,519.91 million during 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19 (till September 2018), respectively, said a release.

Till Nov., India imports 42 lakh t of urea
Exim News Service - NEW DELHI, December 19 Top
In a written reply to the Lok Sabha, the Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers, Mr Rao Inderjit Singh, informed that India imported 42.03 lakh tonnes of urea for over $ 1 billion till November in the current fiscal.

"Urea is the only fertiliser under statutory price control and its import for direct agriculture use is permitted through state trading enterprises (STEs), namely, MMTC, STC under the Foreign Trade Policy of the government," the Minister added.

Commerce Ministry to set up Trade Promotion bodies in 15 Countries - Suresh Prabhu
Daily Shipping Times - New Delhi, December 21 Top
Union Minister of Commerce &Industry and Civil Aviation, Suresh Prabhu, said that the Ministry is examining the proposal to set up trade promotion bodies in 15 countries to promote exports of SMEs from India. Suresh Prabhu was speaking at the inaugural session of the 15th Global SME Business Summit in New Delhi.

The Minister informed the participants of the Summit about the commitment of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry towards the growth of the SMEs that are the pivot of the overall economic growth of the Country. The Minister spoke about the changing of trade regimes globally and establishment of new trade routes based on availability of labour and skill. Suresh Prabhu said that Global Value Chains (GVCs) are specifically significant for SMEs as they provide them the opportunity to contribute to exports without bearing the setup costs. The concept of trade has been changing where larger enterprises increasingly rely on outsourcing the manufacturing activities. This practice has proved quite advantageous to the MSMEs where they can participate in the exports through manufacturing of intermediate products.

Suresh Prabhu further stated that the Commerce Ministry is also working on a comprehensive strategy to boost the MSME sector by granting new patents in record time. New Intellectual Property regime is being launched to strengthen the IPRs of Indian MSMEs as well as protecting IPRs of the other Countries.

Indian Tea Association inks pact with Chinese Tea body to boost exports
Daily Shipping Times - Kolkata, December 17 Top
The Indian Tea Association (ITA) expects to double exports to China in the next one year.

During January-October 2018, India exported 7.76 million kg (mkg) of tea to China valued at around Rs. 135 crore (Rs.1.3 billion), a growth of over 19 per cent as compared to 6.5 mkg in the year-ago period.

According to ITA Chairman Vivek Goenka, the numbers are likely to grow to close to 15 mkg by December 2019.

India exported close to 240 million kg (mkg) of tea in 2017. Russia, the UAE, the UK and Iran are some of the major markets for Indian teas.

"China imports close to 30 mkg of tea annually, a major share of which comes from Sri Lanka. That is also because they keep organising frequent trade delegations. If we are more active and take concerted efforts then we should be able to export close to 15 mkg of tea to China by December 2019," Goenka said.

Indian sugar industry plans to boost exports to South Korea
Press Trust of India - New Delhi, December 19 Top
A delegation of domestic sugar industry delegation held discussions with top representatives of all three sugar refineries of South Korea in Seoul with a view to increase shipment of the commodity.

The issue was discussed during the seventh round of India South Korea Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) negotiations, held in Seoul last week.

"South Korea imports around 15 lakh tonnes of raw sugar annually and the Indian sugar industry is making efforts to export raw sugar from India during 2018-19 sugar season," the commerce ministry said in a statement Tuesday.

It said that the discussions were positive, and subject to Indian sugar industry meeting the quality standards and specifications prescribed by the South Korea.

"The Indian sugar industry will undertake further discussions and talks with the sugar refineries in South Korea to pursue the matter further so that sugar exports may take place from India to South Korea," it added.

Shipping News

Wan Hai adds Tuticorin Port call on CI2 service to tap Cabotage relaxations
Daily Shipping Times - Chennai, December 17 Top
India's new liberalized cabotage program - intended to bolster direct mainline shipping connections instead of transshipment via foreign hub ports - is working, as ocean carriers have begun to realign their routings to/from the emerging market economy to take advantage of the resurgent/broader Coastal Shipping environment.

With the above as a backdrop, an intra-Asia consortium led by Wan Hai Lines has expanded its port rotation to include a new direct call at Tuticorin Port - a Major Port on East Coast near Chennai.

The China-India Service II (CI2) debuted the Tuticorin addition recently, with a call from the Wan Hai 510, voyage E116, at the new Dakshin Bharat Gateway Terminal (DBGT).

The revised CI2 port rotation is as follows: Tuticorin, India; Penang and Port Klang, Malaysia; Hong Kong; Qingdao, Shanghai, Ningbo and Shekou, China; Port Klang; Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), India; and back to Tuticorin.

Inaugurating the new call at Tuticorin (also known as V.O. Chidambaranar), Shipping Minister Mr. Nitin Gadkari said shippers in the region have had to transship their cargo by using feeder networks. With the direct call, exporters/importers will now be able to realize substantial cost savings - savings officials put at $50 per container.

"With the strategic location of the Tuticorin Port being so close to the East-West trade route and a draft of 16 meters (52 feet), the port is poised to attract more mainline vessels and has the potential to become a transshipment hub of South India," Gadkari said.

2M Partners revamp Asia-Europe Networks
Daily Shipping Times - Copenhagen/Geneva, December 21 Top
In order to improved schedule reliability, A.P. Moller - Maersk has overhauled its services connecting Asia and Europe by cutting eight ports calls in the network.

The improvements are expected to result in prolonged, but competitive transit times, the company explained.

"To meet our customer's increasing need for reliable cargo delivery, we have reviewed our service network and identified additional time to recover from the potential delays we continue to face from bad weather and other external factors,"says Johan Sigsgaard, Head of Europe Trade, A.P. Moller - Maersk.

Maersk said that the enhancements build on the Asia-Europe network changes in May 2018 which enabled it to regain "a market leading position on schedule reliability."

As disclosed, the changes include a net reduction of eight port calls in the network enabling "extra operational buffer time."

Further, six extra vessels are added across the ten service strings in the network, with weekly deployed capacity remaining unchanged due to slower vessel speeds.

The integrated logistics company said that reductions were achieved with minimal impact to product offerings.

Maersk's 2M Alliance partner Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), said in a separate release that it has also revised its ocean network between Asia and Europe.

"We can only assume that container terminal congestion at the main ports of the trade will continue to worsen, leading us to anticipate and incorporate longer time buffers in the schedule, in terms of port stays and speed at sea," MSC said.

"MSC is therefore heavily investing in the East-West network to deliver a first-class product and ensure that we match, or even exceed, our customers' expectations."

Specifically, MSC will phase in additional vessels to existing loops on the trade. The implementation of the new network is planned for early March 2019 and remains subject to further updates.

Transshipment volumes grow by 9% in November
Daily Shipping Times -Mumbai, December 21 Top
Ocean carriers in the India trade say they continue to increase transshipment handling - powered by the May 21 cabotage rule change - but new data indicate the pace moderated somewhat in November.

The Container Shipping Lines Association (CSLA), in a filing to the Ministry of Shipping, stated that member lines transshipped 61,263 TEU at Indian Ports during November, a modest 9 percent gain; the October gain was 20 percent, a JOC analysis shows.

On the upside, an impressive 71 percent, or 43,788 TEU, of that projected volume was long-haul, laden export-import cargo - up from 69 percent during October, with empty movement pegged at 29 percent, or 17,475 TEU, versus 31 percent in the previous month.

If the cabotage restrictions had been in place, those containers would have made their way as follows: Colombo (Sri Lanka) - 25,118 TEU, or 41 percent; Singapore - 13,478 TEU, or 22 percent; Port Klang - 6,739 TEU, or 11 percent; and others - 15,928 TEU, or 26 percent.

Statistics collected by JOC supports what CSLA reported, as there have been respectable transshipment freight improvements at selected, dominant, Major Ports. The totals are Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) at 4,530 TEU in November, up from 3,198 TEU in October; Visakhapatnam at 1,401 TEU, up from 1,077 TEU; and more significantly, Chennai - which is slowly establishing a foothold in that segment - at 88 TEU, up from 44 TEU.

Although that overall lower growth is a concern, industry observers generally agree that the new cabotage program - enabling foreign-flag carriers to engage in coastal container transportation - is still in its early stages and, as such, it is currently not meaningful or possible to determine the full impact of supply chain improvements arising from a broader market environment.

In addition, the benefits of unrestricted coastal operations remain an open debate point among stakeholders, with some arguing that privately operated Minor Ports - armed with unregulated tariffs and infrastructure superiority - stand to gain the most, rather than Major Ports, which are handicapped by price/other administrative regulations and lower productivity.

Cabotage reform creating options for shippers, logistics providers

Notwithstanding the divergence cited above, India's logistics reform measures have increased competition across transport modes - something cargo owners and supply chain stakeholders welcome. One prime example: amid fears of slackening freight demand, as more inland volumes shift to sea for the aforementioned reasons, Indian Railways recently announced a 25 percent discount on haulage rates the public enterprise applies to intermodal train operators for empty container transportation.

The haulage charge is the fee freight wagon companies incur for use of Indian Railways' national infrastructure networks. This component represents the majority of overall operating costs for intermodal logistics providers, including state-owned Container Corporation of India (Concor) - which is an offshoot of Indian Railways. Besides Concor, there are reportedly 17 private rail operators in the Country, following the end of public monopoly in 2006.

Logistics News

Ministry of Railways offers 25 pc discount in haulage rate for transport of empty containers & empty flat wagons
Exim News Service: New Delhi, December 16 Top
The Ministry of Railways has taken an innovative business decision to give a discount of 25 per cent on extant haulage rate per TEU for transport of empty containers as well as empty flat container wagons, in order to facilitate movement of containers by rail towards ports, thereby leading to higher loading by rail from ports. This move is expected to enhance efficient handling of traffic at ports and attract larger share of container traffic to rail, said a release.

The move is aimed at meeting the demand of container train operators (CTOs) and is expected to give a boost to the container business-ex-im as well as domestic. It is also expected to give the desired fillip to the rail container segment and be a profitable proposition for Railways, as per the release.

The Railways expects to get more traffic through this rate reduction and load more commodities at economical rates, facilitating low prices and thereby benefiting the common man. Also, the smooth movement of rakes will result in less detention and, therefore, products reaching their destination on time, the release said.

Presently, 18 private CTOs and CONCOR offer container train services.

Expansion and diversification of its freight basket has been a priority agenda for the Railways, the objective being to capture new commodity traffic that has been moving by road or by other modes of transport. Container transportation is one such high priority segment that the Railways has focused on in its bid to enhance its freight basket. Containerisation of goods offers an excellent transportation solution that is efficient and cost-effective for the economy and also helps the Railways to attract non-conventional/non-bulk traffic to rail, the release added.

Rail connectivity to ports a major focus

Exim News Service - New Delhi, December 17 Top
As many as 52 projects for rail connectivity to ports entailing an investment of Rs 44,605 crore (Rs.446.05 billion) are underway, it is learnt. These projects are being carried out jointly by the Indian Port Rail Corporation Ltd (IPRCL) and the Ministry of Railways.

Of the total, IPRCL has taken up 32 projects worth Rs 18,253 crore (Rs.182.5 billion) across nine Major Ports, of which eight projects worth Rs 175 crore have been completed, reports said.

In addition, 23 rail connectivity projects worth Rs 24,877 crore (Rs.248.7 billion) identified under Sagarmala have been taken up by the Ministry of Railways. Of these, seven projects entailing an investment of Rs 2,491 crore have been completed.

Another 15 rail connectivity projects worth Rs 4,193 were also taken up, of which three projects worth Rs 52 crore (RS.520 million) have been finished.

Besides, a pact for implementation of the 362 km Indore-Manmad new railway line project has been signed between Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust, Ministry of Railways and the governments of Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh. The project will reduce the distance from Mumbai/Pune to key central India locations by 171 km, resulting in lower logistics costs. The new railway line will pass through the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor nodes of Igatpuri, Nashik and Sinnar, Pune and Khed, and Dhule and Nardana, reports added.

Indian Port News

APM Terminals Mumbai surpasses record 2 m TEUs in 2018
Exim News Service - Navi Mumbai, December 18 Top
APM Terminals Mumbai, the largest container terminal facility in India, has achieved the record of handling more than 2 million TEUs of throughput in 2018 for the first time since the terminal was commissioned in 2006. It is the only Indian port to have achieved this record in a calendar year, highlighted a release.

"I am very proud of all our employees, contractors and frontline workforce who have all worked as a team to achieve this record performance. I am especially happy that this record has been achieved by ensuring safe operations at all times," said Mr Ravi Gaitonde, COO, APM Terminals Mumbai.

He added, "I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all our customers and the trade for their support. I would also like to thank the management and staff of JNPT, JNCH (Customs House) and CISF for their continued support."

Backed by the growing import-export containerised trade with the world, APM Terminals Mumbai expects to maintain the growth momentum in the coming years. It is embracing digitisation to keep up with the ever-changing trade dynamics and increasing its efficiency aimed at supporting the government of India's initiative for Ease of Doing Business, the release added.

Krishnapatnam Port registers growth in transhipment volumes
Exim News Service - Nellore, December 18 Top
Clocks 20,600 TEUs in Nov.

Krishnapatnam Port Company Ltd (KPCL), the country's largest all-weather; deep water transhipment port, on the east-coast of India, has registered a 7 per cent growth in its transhipment volume; clocking 20,600 TEUs for November 2018-19 compared with 19,316 TEUs for the same period of the fiscal year 2017-18, making it the largest transhipment port on the east coast of India.

In order to enhance its transhipment service offerings, the port had undertaken a recent expansion programme for its container terminal-NCT (Navayuga Container Terminal earlier known as Krishnapatnam Port Container Terminal). The expansion involved addition of 250 metres of berth length to the existing 650 metres and erecting three more QCs (quay cranes). Going forward, the port has announced a total extended quay length of 900 m with 3 new SPP quay cranes, thus bringing the total number of QCs to 8. Expected to be completed by the 4th quarter of 2018-19, the enhanced infrastructure will increase the terminal's capacity from the current 1.2 million TEUs to of 2 million TEUs.

India has been spending billions of dollars to build container transhipment ports to cut its dependence on neighbouring transhipment hubs. Currently, about 2.8 million TEUs or about 25 per cent of India's cargo containers are transhipped at ports outside India mainly at Colombo, Singapore, Port Klang, Salalah and Jebel Ali which builds inefficiencies in logistics and raise costs. Of this, Colombo alone accounts for 1.2 million TEUs.

Commenting on the development, Ms Vinita Venkatesh, Director, Navayuga Container Terminal, said, "Addressing the industrial urgency of ex-im trade for handling transhipment cargo and reducing the dependence on neighbouring ports, Krishnapatnam has been consistently building its infrastructure and restructuring it service offerings. We are confident that our transhipment offerings will enable us to build and sustain long term contracts with multiple shipping lines and will go a long way as an efficient revenue model for Krishnapatnam Port."

"The decision to invest additional capex ahead of demand is with the objective of ensuring that sufficient quay length and handling infrastructure is available for the numerous mainline services and coastal feeder operators looking to hub transshipment operations at NCT, Krishnapatnam," she added.

Shreyas Shipping provides a network of feeder vessels between Krishnapatnam and Kolkata, Haldia and other ports on the east coast of India. The company encouraged by the service offerings it availed with Krishnapatnam Port has further expanded its scope of business with the port. The company is today running no less than 3 feeder loops from NCT (Navayuga Container Terminal) at Krishnapatnam to connect with Kolkata, Haldia, Vizag, Paradip, Kakinada, Tuticorin on the east coast as well as Cochin, Mangalore, Mundra, Kandla, Hazira and Nhava Sheva on the west coast. With this network, Shreyas Shipping and NCT are providing transhipment services to mainline vessels calling at Krishnapatnam, to all container ports on the Indian coastline.

The development was viewed as a huge opportunity by the global container shipping company, Maersk Line, which took up the new initiative immediately and began transhipment operations of its containers from China, Korea, Far East at Krishnapatnam to the final destination of Kolkata and Haldia. Other liners followed suit and soon Hyundai Merchant Marine, Zim, Goldstar, SCI and many NVOCCs (Non Vessel Operating Common Carriers) also began their transhipment operations at Krishnapatnam Port.

NCT at Krishnapatnam Port was the first terminal on the east coast of India chosen by the foreign flag carrier Xpress Feeders of Singapore to deploy a transhipment feeder under the new relaxed regime for transhipment. Xpress now operates 3 vessels from NCT to Kolkata which are specially made for to suit the low water depth at Kolkata Port.

All the transhipment feeders together offer 5 feeder services per week at NCT, Krishnapatnam. Due to this, transhipment volume at the terminal has grown steadily from 13,000 TEUs per month in the first quarter of current financial year to 17, 200 TEUs by the second quarter, and now to 19,800 TEUs in the third quarter.

The company which witnessed a record 88 per cent rise in the number of containers it handled at 4,81,408 TEUs in FY 2017-18, handled 3,11,819 TEUs until November 2018-19, said a release.

Mumbai Port simultaneously handles two full rakes of sugar for export
Exim News Service - Mumbai, December 19 Top
For the first time in the history of Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT), two full rakes received from Baramati and Rahuri (in Maharashtra) were handled simultaneously in the docks to meet the schedule of export of raw sugar. The rakes were unloaded and released in the free period. This was made possible due to the coordinated efforts of exporters, Custom House Brokers, RITES, Indian Railways and Mumbai Port Trust. The sugar consignment is being exported to Bangladesh and Somalia, said a release.

Mumbai Port has extended pre-shipment storage facilities of 30 free days for agri products. Further, concessional demurrage charges have been approved for attracting sugar consignments.

Mumbai Port Trust is geared to support all infrastructural requirements for handling additional quantity of raw sugar for export on behalf of all sugar exporters, the release emphasised.

Performance of Major Ports improves in key parameters
Exim News Service - New Delhi, December 20 Top
Union Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Chemicals and Fertilisers, Mr Mansukh L. Mandaviya, has praised the efforts under the Sagarmala programme, saying that port-led development has resulted in all-round betterment in this sector. The Minister highlighted in a statement that the cargo handling capacity of Major Ports has been enhanced by over 400 MTPA in the last four years.

The government's flagship programme promoted port-led development in the country under four major components: Port Modernisation, Port Led Industrialisation, Port Connectivity Enhancement and Coastal Community Development. The National Perspective Plan (NPP) 2015-2035 for Sagarmala was released in 2016. Under the port modernisation component of Sagarmala, the major achievements are as shown in the table.


Also, the RFID-based gate-automation system implemented at all the Major Ports reduced congestion at port gates and enabled faster evacuation of cargo, thereby reducing average turn-around time, said a release.