Port Infrastructure and Shipping Industry – Sagarmala Project, SDC, CEZ, etc.

Gujarat Maritime Cluster Project at GIFT City


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Gujarat Maritime Cluster

Mains level: Need for a Maritime Cluster in India

The Gujarat Maritime Cluster coming up in the GIFT (Gujarat International Finance Tec-City) City at Gandhinagar will be a dedicated system to address logistics of ports and seaways.

Try answering this:

Q.What do you mean by Central Business Districts? How it is different from a Special Economic Zone (SEZ)?

What is a Maritime Cluster?

  • The concept of the maritime cluster is new to India, but these clusters have been driving some of the most competitive ports of the world like Rotterdam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Oslo, Shanghai, and London.
  • Simply put, a maritime cluster is an agglomeration of firms, institutions, and businesses in the maritime sector that are geographically located close to each other.

Gujarat Maritime Cluster

  • While the project was conceptualized back in 2007, it received in-principle approval from the state government only in 2015.
  • The Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB), a nodal agency of the Gujarat government, has been trying to develop such a cluster at GIFT City in the state capital Gandhinagar.
  • This cluster will initially consist of Gujarat-based shipping lines, freight forwarders, shipping agents, bunker suppliers, stevedores, and shipbrokers with chartering requirements.
  • In the second stage, the cluster would attempt to bring Indian ship owners, ship operators, Indian charterers and technical consultants scattered in cities like Mumbai, Chennai, and Delhi to Gujarat.
  • Thereafter it would target to attract global players in the maritime sphere.

Need for a maritime cluster

  • This project will try to bring back businesses that have migrated over the years to foreign locations due to the absence of the right ecosystem in the country.
  • Gujarat has a lot of ports and handles 40 per cent of the country’s cargo, but it does not target the entire value chain.
  • Since we didn’t have the ecosystem, a lot of Indian companies have moved to foreign locations. For instance, Adani Group has the biggest port in Gujarat, but for their chartering needs, they are based out of Dubai.

Back2Basics: GIFT City, Gandhinagar

  • GIFT city is India’s first operational smart city and international financial services centre (much like a modern IT park).
  • The idea for GIFT was conceived during the Vibrant Gujarat Global Investor Summit 2007 and the initial planning was done by East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI).
  • Currently approximately 225 units/companies are operational with more than 12000 professionals employed in the City.
  • The entire city is based on concept of FTTX (Fibre to the home / office).The fiber optic is laid in fault tolerant ring architecture so as to ensure maximum uptime of services.
  • Every building in GIFT City is an intelligent building. There is piped supply of cooking gas. India’s first city-level DCS (district cooling system) is also operational at GIFT City.

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3 years ago

How is Singapore a landlocked country? Did you mean Switzerland?


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