KPCT ear­marks the maiden voy­age

A stan­dard op­er­at­ing pro­ce­dure was signed be­tween In­dia and Bangladesh to move com­mer­cial cargo be­tween the two coun­tries.

Cargo Talk - - Shipping -

The first di­rect con­tainer ves­sel set sail from Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam Port on March 28, 2016, as a part of coastal ship­ping agree­ment to fa­cil­i­tate trade be­tween In­dia and Bangladesh. MV Har­bour-1 owned by Neepa Parib­a­han and built by Western Ma­rine Ship­yard is the first Bangladesh con­tainer ves­sel to have re­ceived the per­mis­sion from the ship­ping de­part­ments of both the coun­tries.

Com­ment­ing on the de­vel­op­ment, Chinta Sasid­har, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam Port said “This agree­ment, signed in Novem­ber 2015, is his­toric not just for Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam but for the en­tire na­tion as this would pave way for en­hanced bi­lat­eral trade ties be­tween the two clos­est neigh­bours of the sub­con­ti­nent. Be­sides an im­proved con­nec­tiv­ity the ser­vice will play a vi­tal role in de­con­gest­ing the bor­der points and bring­ing down the cost and tran­sit time in­volved, thereby pro­vid­ing the best com­pet­i­tive freight rates to the ad­van­tage of the in­dus­try.”

To fa­cil­i­tate easy bi­lat­eral trade, many con­di­tions have been waived by both coun­tries. The ves­sels of both the coun­tries upon en­try in to In­dia and Bangladesh shall be treated as do­mes­tic ves­sels and not for­eign go­ing ves­sels. The pro­vi­sion will play a key role in ad­dress­ing the traf­fic con­ges­tion at Pe­trapole (In­dia) and Be­napole (Bangladesh) the two bor­der points which pose as one of the big­gest im­ped­i­ments to the move­ment of EXIM cargo.

This will also help to re­duce the pa­per work re­quired at the cus­toms check points, port dues paid at In­dian ports too will be at par with In­dian ves­sels. The ves­sel and cargo will also en­joy com­plete Pro­tec­tion and In­dem­nity (P&I) cov­er­age in­sur­ing cargo from the point of load­ing to the fi­nal des­ti­na­tion and till the time the par­cel reaches the fi­nal con­signee. Both the coun­tries agree to re­duce cus­toms doc­u­men­ta­tion and other re­quire­ments to the es­sen­tial min­i­mum for the pur­pose of eas­ier cargo move­ment and to have cus­tom sta­tions at or near the points of en­try and exit in each country.

“Ear­lier the ship­ments from In­dian ports be­ing trans­ported to Bangladesh were routed ei­ther via Colombo or Sin­ga­pore. With the launch of the di­rect ser­vice, time taken for such ship­ments would come down from two to five days,” said Anil Yend­luri, Di­rec­tor and CEO, Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam Port.

The open­ing of this route will also en­able the move­ment of cargo to the North­east­ern states of In­dia through coastal ship­ping up to Chit­tagong and there­after by road or in­land wa­ter­ways. Se­condly, the deep draft ports on the east­ern coast of In­dia can be ‘hub ports’ for the on­ward trans­porta­tion of cargo to Bangladesh through River Sea Ves­sels (RSV).

The SOP stip­u­lates that only two cat­e­gories of ves­sels – RSVIV and RSV-III can ply be­tween the ports. While cat­e­gory IV of the river-sea ves­sels can sail dur­ing all weather con­di­tions and dur­ing the night, class III ves­sels are nav­i­ga­ble in fair weather. Th­ese ves­sels can still through a depth of 3.76 me­ters and can carry 176 TEUs of cargo at a go. Al­most 92 per cent of the country’s ex­port im­port trade draw cargo from western, cen­tral and south­ern In­dia headed to Bangladesh. A lot of cargo can get di­verted from road to sea through this ini­tia­tive and ex­porters can ben­e­fit from rate and tran­sit ad­van­tage. A lot of yarn from Ludhiana in Pun­jab can di­rectly go to Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam in­stead of go­ing to Mun­dra.

Ex­porters and im­porters from Ben­galuru trad­ing with Bangladesh can utilise and ben­e­fit by weekly train ser­vice from ICD Ben­galuru to KPCT

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