India working on reducing sulphur content in shipping fuel: Mandaviya

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 23-07-2019 21:31 IST | Created: 23-07-2019 21:31 IST
India working on reducing sulphur content in shipping fuel: Mandaviya
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Union Minister Mansukh L Mandaviya on Tuesday said India will have a greater voice at International Maritime Organization (IMO) even as it is working towards complying with the IMO 2020 regulations on limiting sulphur content of bunker fuel. "As a stakeholder and government, India is committed to comply with the IMO's decision to reduce the sulphur content in the shipping fuel. But we need to ascertain whether India was part of this decision making," Mandaviya, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Shipping and MoS for Chemical and Fertilizers, was quoted as saying in a Ficci statement.

Speaking at the conference on 'Fueling the Maritime Sector: IMO 2020 and Beyond' organised by Ficci, Mandaviya said the Prime Minister has created a respectable image for the country in the international arena and as India is recognised world over, it is crucial that the country participates in forums like IMO and get India's voice heard. "India being one of the major shipping nations, our role at policy making level has to be significant. We are an important stakeholder in this space and therefore need to play a proactive role. This time I will personally like to participate at the IMO deliberations," the statement said quoting Mandaviya.

He further said, "We must adopt new technologies and ensure that the maritime sector is compliant with global norms. The maritime sector provides employment to a large number of people. We need to increase the number of seafarers in the country." Mandaviya also said that logistics cost at present accounts for 14 per cent of GDP as against logistics cost of 9 per cent.

He said if it is brought downs to 9 per cent, it will automatically become 5 per cent more competitive in the global market. "Domestically, this will bring down inflation by 2.5 per cent," he added.

Sanjay Bandopadhyay, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Shipping, said, "Shipping is an important sector for the government, and we are trying to bring in policies to help the sector." Anil Kishore Singh, Chairman, FICCI Sub-Committee on Inland Waterways and CEO (Inland Waterways), Adani Logistics Ltd, said India's maritime sector is on a high growth path, mainly due to measures taken by the government like Sagarmala, which promotes port-led infrastructure development in the country.

Poul V Jensen, Director, European Business and Technology Centre (EBTC), said that more than 80 per cent of the global trade is carried out by shipping. FICCI-KPMG knowledge paper, 'Fueling the Maritime Sector: IMO 2020 and Beyond', was also released during the event. The paper highlights using no sulphur or using technologies to treat burnt sulphur so that emission norms are met. The paper further states the necessary steps to be undertaken by the Indian government to meet IMO 2020 regulations.

"With January 1, 2020 inching closer, India needs to expedite progress on assessing the current level of preparedness, develop national policies and provide implementation guidelines for the shipping industry for smooth transition to compliance with IMO 2020," the knowledge paper said.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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