Hyderabad: Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu has decided to constitute the long pending AP Maritime Board to attract over Rs 30,000 crore investments. AP has nearly 1,000-km coastline with 14 notified non-major ports and a major one at Visakhatpanam.
Officials said the waterfront of Andhra Pradesh offers tremendous scope for development of ports which will stimulate export-oriented industries, create large scale employment and enable industrialisation in the hinterland besides raising revenue for the cash-starved state.
It has been a long pending demand from the industrialists to set up a maritime Board. Even the Centre had asked undivided AP to constitute one like Gujarat, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. In 2005, CRISIL had drafted Maritime Board Bill. It was approved by the state Cabinet and introduced in the Assembly in 2010, but the Bill lapsed. Now, Mr Naidu wants to constitute the Maritime Board
Gujarat set up the Board and developed 40 ports from just six in the last 20 years. The 40 ports now handle 310 million tonnes of cargo. AP has 14 notified non-major ports and cargo is being handled at only four ports with 58 million tonnes per annum against 90 MT capacity. The AP maritime Board is expected to act as single window facility and kick up rapid development.
The proposed Board would be headed by the Chief Minister as its ex officio chairman. A representative from the Indian Navy, Coast Guard nominated by the Government of India would be among its other members.
”The residuary state would like to take full advantage of its long coastline by co-promoting with the Government of India and private sector large-scale projects like Mega Petro-Chemical Investment Region, ship-building and related industries. The state also proposes to increase substantially its share of export and import trade and secure a leading position in the international maritime map by modernizing existing minor ports, developing new ports and facilitating development of port-based industries and related world-class infrastructure along the coastal corridor,” a senior official said.
The government has also decided to provide security at ports in accordance with the International Ship and Port Facilities Security Code. Andhra Pradesh has on date 14 notified non-major ports and one major port (Visakkhapatnam) along its 996km coastline.
Andhra Pradesh is well linked internally as well as to the rest of the World. The State is active in encouraging the private sector to improve the port infrastructure. Six ports are under various stages of development in the PPP mode.
The 14 notified non-major ports are Bhavanapadu, Meghavaram, Kalingapatnam, Bheemunipatnam, Gangavaram, Nakkapalli, Kakinada SEZ, Kakinada, S.Yanam, Narsapur, Machilipatnam, Nizampatnam, Vadarevu and Krishnapatnam.