Logistics

Shreyas Shipping starts Kochi-Kollam container service

Our Bureau Kochi | Updated on November 11, 2013

Coastal shipping in Kerala is likely to get a boost with Shreyas Shipping starting a Kochi-Kollam container service.

The container ship “OEL Victory” had its inaugural service last week from Vallarpadam terminal in Kochi to Kollam carrying 25 containers loaded with floor tiles and marbles.

The frequency of the service will be announced later depending on the volume of trade, said a company official.

The service, part of Shreyas’s plan to link all ports in both east and west coats, is expected to help movement of both exim and coastal cargo. S. Ramakrishnan, Chairman and Managing Director, said the service will help the State Government’s efforts to divert cargo from road to costal shipping. The Kerala Government recently announced a policy providing financial and fiscal incentives to encourage movement of goods by sea.

“With the opening of the East-West corridor, Shreyas added a new dimension to Indian container trade. And with this new service, the company will be able to offer unique service to the Kerala trade,” Ramakrishnan told reporters.

The service will also link Vallarpadam international container transshipment terminal with other ports in the State, facilitating feeder service for exim containers. Shreyas currently operates six vessels along the Indian coast.

The Board of Directors of Shreyas Shipping and Logistics, which met in Kochi, also announced a net profit of Rs 3.73 crore for the quarter ended September 2013, a 30 per cent increase over the year ago period.

Other shipping companies are also expected to start dedicated coastal service linking Kerala to other coastal States such as Goa, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat, said a shipping agent.

Meanwhile, speaking at the launch of the coastal shipping project in Kollam, Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said that water resources in the State should be tapped for freight and passenger movement to hasten the development of the State.

The State has not even tapped five per cent of the potential of waterways, he said, adding that there are also plans to start a passenger ship service from Kollam this year.

The Minister of Ports K. Babu said that Kerala is the first State to offer a subsidy of Re 1 for a consignment of one tonne for a distance of 1 km.

The Kollam port will be further developed under the public private partnership and the Government will also encourage building of ships suitable for coastal shipping.

He pointed out that Government had constituted a coastal shipping promotion fund with an allocation of Rs 3 crore.

sajeevkumar.v@thehindu.co.in

Published on November 11, 2013

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