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Editorial: Let the New Year Usher in Bright Days for the Trade

Port Wings, 27 December 2017:

The eventful 2017 is bidding goodbye and 2018 is before you with its usual promise of growth. India, as a developing force in the global arena, has utilized much of the opportunities, be it successfully launching Chabahar Port on Iran or bidding for maritime assets in Sri Lanka, in the last 12 months to build Brand India as a force to reckon with.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, unlike his predecessors, used his office to reach every nook and corner of the globe, be it to those countries, which deserves visit of External Affairs Minister or any cabinet ministers, and made a resurgence of Brand India that was eroded many centuries ago.

While the Prime Minister’s visit to 50-odd economically viable and highly-business potential countries in the past and built the Brand India, the conversion of visit into business hasn’t happen as anticipated by the pundits of Dalaal Street.

And the continuous upsurge in exports in the last two quarters after series of negative growth has helped the Prime Minister to go ease on foreign visits eventhough they are not yielding any substantial results to Indian industries.

India logistics industry has witnessed a trajectory of growth over the years. The logistics industry in India is anticipated to reach a new level in the coming years and in 2018, the government has to lay the path from where the industries could reach the target.

The Logistics sector is already witnessing paradigm changes, thanks to the dynamic ministers Nitin Gadkari and P Radhakrishnan. The growth would largely be due to an improving logistics infrastructure in the form of the development of freight corridors, logistics hubs and warehouses, port development and technology up gradations.

While the Make In India and Make for India schemes are gathering steam and likely to get accelerated in 2018 due to elections in prominent states, the process of bringing any real change across the board still lacking.

The Union Government despite all the problems and shortfalls finally launched GST,  aimed at bringing in sweeping changes in the way business being conducted in the country over the last seven decades.

India has a coastline spanning 7516.6 kilometers, forming one of the biggest peninsulas in the world. It is serviced by 12 major ports and over 180 non-major ports. Besides, the country has about 50-odd cargo-handling airports spread across the nation.

India, eventhough remained a maritime superpower in the early centuries, still lacks modern port facility to accommodate or dock larger vessels that are outnumbering the tradition 4000-TEU capacity vessels.

On the other hand, our country also lacks a dedicated airport for aircargo handling like the western countries.

It would be better if the Government of India dwells on these lines and make our country more competitive in the international market in 2018.

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