The MoU will pave the way for availing technical expertise from the Europe''s largest ''Port of Rotterdam'' in the Netherlands. It will be signed during the visit of Dutch King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima to Kochi, said Kerala Ports Minister Kadanapally Ramachandran here Tuesday.
He told reporters that the Centre had given its nod for the MoU and hoped that this sustainable development of infrastructure would make Kerala emerge as a major hub of maritime industries and services.
Kerala has a 590-km long coastline with 17 notified non-major ports and one major port (Cochin), he said adding that the MoU was the outcome of the visit of Chief Minister Pinnarayi Vijayan along with the officials to the Netherlands during May this year.
Kerala Ports department secretary Sanjay Kaul told PTI that the nitty-gritty of Kerala-Rotterdam Port cooperation would be worked out after the MoU is formally inked.
The 42-km long huge Rotterdam Port is spread over 12,713 hectares with water area of 4,810 hectares and depth 24 metre.
Earlier, addressing the 17th meeting of the Maritime States Development Council, convened by the Union Shipping Ministry, Minister Ramachandran sought quick clearance of the Centre for viability gap funding and equity support for rail connectivity to Vizhinjam port and establishment of plant quarantine facility at Kollam port.
He also sought removal of GST on bunkers as this has impacted the profitability of Cochin Port and central government support for annual maintenance dredging expenditure incurred by the Cochin port.
Some of the Kerala government projects which are in pipeline are -- development of international transhipment hub at Vizhinjam, mega feeder facility at Azhikkal, and satellite ports at Kollam and Beypore, rejuvenation of ancient ports at Alappuzha and Kodungallur, enhanced rail and road connectivity to the ports, providing skill development centres for maritime development, he said.
A few days back Pinarayi Vijayan had tweeted that an understanding was reached to design and develop the Azhikkal port on the lines of the Port of Rotterdam and to strengthen the Kerala Maritime Institutes at Kodungalloor and Neendakara with Netherlands support. PTI JBL RT RT
Disclaimer :- This story has not been edited by Outlook staff and is auto-generated from news agency feeds. Source: PTI