Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW), under its Sagarmala Programme, has embarked on developing an ecosystem for promotion of Ro-Ro (Roll-on, Roll-off) ferry and waterway transportation in the country. This mode of transportation has multiple benefits including reduced travel time, reduced logistics cost and lower pollution in comparison to conventional mode of transportation.
In view of immense potential and distinct advantages of ferry service, Ministry is financially supporting 45 projects with total project cost of Rs. 1900 Crore. Under the gambit of Sagarmala, Ministry has operationalized Ro-Pax Ferry service between Ghogha – Hazira in Gujarat and Mumbai – Mandwa in Maharashtra. These services have transported more than 7 lakh passenger and 1.5 lakh vehicles, contributing towards clean environment and public welfare.
In view of success of these projects and high demand and potential, additional projects are planned at Pipavav and Muldwarka in Gujarat and Ghodbunder, Veldur, Vasai, Kashid, Rewas, Manori and JN Port etc. in Maharashtra. In addition to above, Ministry is supporting 4 projects in Andhra Pradesh, 2 projects in Odisha and 1 each in Tamil Nadu and Goa.
The Ministry has prepared draft of “Guidelines for Operationalization of Ro-Ro and Ro-Pax ferry service along the coast of India” after incorporating the preliminary inputs received from the stakeholders. The guidelines encompass the two aspects of ferry operation namely; concessions for terminal operation and license for operation of Ro-Pax vessels.
These guidelines will homogenize and streamline the development and operations of ferry services, along with, promoting ease of doing business by eliminating unnecessary delays, disagreements and introducing digital interventions at customer interface. They will also help State/UT Governments and Port Authorities in implementation of such projects by standardization of procedures. Further, it will help in instilling confidence among the private players thereby increasing their participation and promoting healthy competition in such projects.
The Ministry intends to seek feedback and suggestions on the draft guidelines for operationalization of Ro-Ro and Ro-Pax ferry service along the coast of India from all stakeholders. The document can be accessed from the websites of the MoPSW and Sagarmala on the links https://shipmin.gov.in/ and https://sagarmala.gov.in/ respectively and suggestions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org the proforma attached as Annexure I of the guidelines within 21 days from the date of publication.