Railways looks to bag 45% of ports traffic by 2030



New Delhi

The railways has set a target to bag around 45 per cent of the traffic from ports by 2030, as compared to the 27 per cent it carries currently, says the National Rail Plan.

According to the plan, the overall traffic handled at major ports is likely to increase from the present 700 MT to 925 MT by 2026 and 1,400 million tonnes by 2030. In order to meet the growing demand, the Indian Railways has undertaken some works on top priority with targeted completion by 2024.

These works include the Chennai Beach–Attipattu line (Kamarajar port), Kanaknadi–Panambur line (New Mangaluru port), Raipur–Titlagarh Doubling (Vishakapatnam), Madurai–Tuticorin Doubling (Tuticorin), Titlagarh– Sambalpur Doubling (Paradip), Banspani–Daitri–Jakhapur Doubling (Paradip),  Sambalpur–Talcher Doubling (Paradip), Hospet–Tenaighat–Vasco Doubling (Marmugao), Budhapank–Salegaon 3rd and 4th line (Paradip) and the Bhadrak–Vizianagram–Vizag–Vijaywada 3rd Line, which cover all major ports on the East Coast.

The western ports of Gujarat and JNPT in Maharashtra will get connected to the northern hinterland of Rewari-National Capital Region as well as Punjab (Ludhiana) via the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor along with feeder routes.

The connectivity of Kolkata and Haldia port to the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor will be established through the Sonnagar-Dankuni leg of the Eastern Corridor, officials said.

“At present, railways carries 25-27 per cent of the major port traffic. By 2026, it aims to increase this share to 32-35 per cent of the projected 925 MT, and by 2030 to 40-45 per cent of the projected 1,200 MT,” an official said.

“As part of first phase projects under Vision 24, two dedicated freight corridors (DFCs) will be commissioned much before 2026 to allow traffic to grow to 32-35 per cent of the share from the present 27 per cent. In second phase, three new DFC corridors will be developed before 2030 to achieve the target of 45 per cent share in port traffic,” he said.

Presently, the total traffic handled by Indian ports is to the tune of 1,200 MT, out of which, nearly 700 MT is handled by the 14 major ports — Deendayal (Kandla) Port, Paradip Port, Jawaharlal Nehru Port, Mumbai Port, Visakhapatnam, Chennai Port, Kolkata Port, New Mangaluru Port, V O Chidambaram (Tuticorin) Port, Kamarajar Port, Kochi Port, Mormugao Port, Mundra Port and Haldia Port.

The remaining 500 million tonnes is handled by over 205 minor ports.

The commodities handled at these ports include petroleum, oil, iron-ore, coal, steel, fertilizers, foodgrains, containers and other cargo.