Enhancing port connectivity and stimulating port-linked industrialisation have been the focal points in government’s strategies to boost trade and employment opportunities.
Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari on May 4 took to Twitter, informing on road linkage projects connecting JNPT(Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust) with the hinterland road network.
National Highways Authority of India has undertaken upgradation and improvement of NH-4B (New NH-348, 548) and SH-54 (New NH-348A) at a cost of approximately ₹ 3,500 crores through multiple road linkage projects connecting JNPT with the hinterland road network.
Relevance of the connectivity projects
Due to weak hinterland connectivity between domestic production centres and gateway ports, logistics involved in merchandise exports or imports is suffering. Traders are forced to use sub-optimal alternate modes for transport. This is leading to higher costs.
Jawaharlal Nehru Port is India’s busiest state-owned container gateway. JNPT is situated at Uran taluka in Raigad district of Maharashtra, a short distance from the city of Navi Mumbai.
The Minister said the projects catering to huge traffic volumes of approximately 48 lakhs will substantially reduce the travel time as well as vehicle operating cost. He said it will bolster the economic development of the region owing to growth of exports and connectivity with Navi Mumbai International Airport. The two grade separators at Karal Phata and Gavan Phata will also speed up lane interchange and connect the national and state roads, the Minister added.
Port connectivity projects in India
As of 4 February 2022, 190 road and rail connectivity projects worth Rs. 1.22 lakh crore have been identified for implementation under Sagarmala focusing on connectivity of Major and Non-Major ports. Out of which, 51 projects have been completed and 139 projects are in various stages of development and implementation.