Indian port reforms seen no threat to Sri Lanka yet

ECONOMYNEXT- Indian government reforms to lift coastal shipping restrictions and encourage ports to attract mainline ships are still not a threat to Sri Lanka’s transhipment hub in Colombo, an Indian port official said.

Vinita Venkatesh, director of the Krishnapatnam Port Terminal, said that although a few reforms had been tried out, they were not working as planned.

“The relaxing of cabotage restrictions and Indian government maritime reforms is often seen as a threat to Colombo’s container transhipment volumes,” Venkatesh said.

But she added, “India’s largest port is really Colombo because all the cargo comes there.”

Venkatesh told the Colombo International Maritime Conference that began on Wednesday that efforts to encourage coastal movement of Indian automobile shipments had not really taken off because of cost issues.

Another initiative to encourage smaller ports to attract mainline vessels, which could be a threat to Colombo’s transhipment volumes, was also not working because of the very short timeframe given to the ports, she said.
(COLOMBO, Sept 21, 2016)

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