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India plans to overhaul 300 dry ports

India plans to overhaul 300 dry ports

NEW DELHI: The government plans to overhaul 300-odd dry ports in the country to resolve infrastructural constraints faced by exporters and importers to give a fillip to India’s foreign trade.

The commerce ministry has set the ball rolling to assess the laws governing dry ports, their subsidies and funding patterns, and streamline them with other ports in accordance with global practices. “We are planning a comparative assessment of regulatory mechanism for dry ports including laws governing their functioning,” an official said on condition of anonymity.
The assessment will compare inland container depots (ICDs), which are considered dry ports, and their functioning in nearly 10 countries.

The study comes in the wake of high interest in developing ICDs, container freight stations and air freight stations following the Rs 8 lakh crore Sagarmala project aimed at port-led development of the country.

“Developing a dry port involves high costs and obsolete procedures for movement of cargo besides a plethora of clearances from various departments,” said a Delhi-based trade expert, who did not wish to be named.

Dry port is an inland terminal that provides services for handling, temporary storage, inspection and customs clearance for international freight. It is usually located where networks of different transportation modes converge and is directly connected by rail or road to a sea port.