Draft Indian Ports Bill, 2022 released for stakeholder consultation
To amend the British-era law for the port sector, the government has released the draft Indian Ports Bill, 2022 for stakeholder consultation.
IMPORTANT FACTS -
- It has been drafted to consolidate and amend the laws relating to ports for prevention of pollution at ports and to ensure compliance of the country's obligation under maritime treaties and international instruments to which India is a party.
Measures for the protection of ports have also been mentioned in the bill.
This Bill 2022 will repeal and replace the existing Indian Ports Act, 1908.
The proposed bill will streamline the development of the maritime sector, while also promoting ease of doing business by defining unnecessary delays, disagreements and responsibilities.
Objectives of the bill :
To promote inter-state and Centre-State integrated planning through a purely advisory and recommendatory framework.
Ensuring prevention of pollution measures for all ports in India involving India's obligations under international treaties.
Addressing the gaps in the dispute resolution framework required for the growing port sector
Introducing transparency and collaboration in development and other aspects through the use of data.
To empower and establish State Maritime Boards for effective administration, control and management of non-major ports in India.
To provide an adjudicatory mechanism for redressal of port related disputes.
To set up a National Council to promote the structured growth and development of the port sector.
Ensuring optimum utilization of India's coastline.
Why was this bill brought ?
The Indian Ports Act, 1908 is over 110 years old.
It is now imperative that the law be amended to reflect the current framework, incorporate India's international obligations, address emerging environmental concerns and assist in the consultative development of the port sector in the national interest.
Importance of Ports in India :
India has 7,500 km of coastline, 14,500 km of potential navigable waterways and strategic bases on major international maritime trade routes.
About 95% of India's trade by volume and 65% by value is carried out through sea transport facilitated by ports.
Several port-led development initiatives have been identified and taken up under the aegis of the Sagarmala Project of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways.
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