PM for speedy execution of container facility at Vallarpadam
Kochi, Jan. 31: The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, has directed different departments to ensure that procedural issues do not come in the way of the country's first international container transhipment terminal at Vallarpadam becoming a global cargo hub.
Set up at a cost of more than Rs 1,600 crore, the Vallarpadam container facility for transhipment is the first of its kind in the country.
Its commencement will reduce the number of days taken to export or import consignments by seven days and reduce the transportation cost of each container by $300 giving a boost to international Indian trade making it more competitive.
Currently, Indian importers and exporters use Colombo, Salalah, Singapore and Dubai hubs for shipments adding to their costs, a press statement issued here said.
In a meeting chaired by the Prime Minister's Principal Secretary and attended by officials from the departments of Revenue, Commerce and Shipping, many inter-departmental issues were sought to be ironed out.
It was felt that if a user-friendly environment is provided, then the transhipment cargo is likely to go up to over 80 per cent of the total against only 7 per cent.
It was also decided at the meeting that the Department of Commerce and Ministry of Shipping would ensure that the first container freight station (CFS) is operational by March 1, and other three proposed CFS's are commissioned shortly after that.
The Customs Department will also ensure necessary arrangements.
The Department of Revenue will prepare within two weeks a proposal to provide Customs officers to work on deputation to the SEZ.