New Mangalore Port users seek better road, rail connectivity

A J Vinayak Mangaluru | Updated on November 22, 2019


Stakeholders from the logistics sector have stressed the need to improve connectivity to New Mangalore Port at the ‘Karnataka Ports, Shipping and Logistics Summit’ in Mangaluru. The summit was jointly organised by the Federation of Indian Export Organisations and India Sea Trade on Friday.

Participating in the business session on ‘Cargo owners’ perspective on reshaping ports and logistics infrastructure’, Shekara Pujari, President of the Association of New Mangalore Port Stevedores, said the condition of the road connecting New Mangalore Port to Bengaluru is poor. Highlighting the poor road conditions on Shiradi Ghat stretch that connects Mangaluru with Bengaluru, he said it affects the movement of cargo between the Port and the hinterland.

Referring to the rail connectivity, he said the railway connectivity remains shut for a longer period of time during monsoon.

Urging the need to speed up the railway line project linking Hubballi and Ankola, he said such a connectivity will help connect the port to places in northern Karnataka such as Dharwad and Belagavi. It will be a cost-effective route for the export-import trade from that part of the hinterland.

Ravish Kamat, Chairman of Plastics Export Promotion Council (PLEXCONCIL), said that Mangaluru region contributes around 8 per cent to the export of value-added manufactured plastic goods from Karnataka. A major chunk of exporters from Bengaluru and surrounding regions send their cargo to Chennai and Kochi ports because of better connectivity and lower costs, he said.

Ananthatam S, Head (Commercial and Logistics) of Tata Coffee Ltd, said that any exporter or importer would prefer good infrastructure, ease of operation, cost effectiveness, and proximity to the port and connectivity. He said nearly 20 per cent of his company’s exports are through NMPT. Stressing the need for improvement in infrastructure, Devakinandan, Senior Vice-President, JSW Infrastructure, said his company brings a major chunk of its cargo in cape-size vessel. That requires a deep-draft. However, he said, he did not see any port that can handle this kind of ships.

Dhruv Gadh, Director of PricewaterhouseCoopers Pvt Ltd, moderated the session.

Published on November 22, 2019

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