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IWAI’s first ever cargo vessel on Brahmaputra set to unleash NE’s potential

By IndianMandarins- 03 Nov 2019
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Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) has been on consistent endeavor to improve connectivity to the landlocked North Eastern Region (NER).

Union Shipping Secretary Gopal Krishna (IAS:1984:WB) is all set to flag off the inland cargo vessel MV Maheshwari carrying 53 TEUs (containers) of petrochemicals, edible oil and beverage etc. On Monday three inland vessels are scheduled to sail on inland waterways from Haldia Dock Complex (HDC) to IWAI terminal at Pandu in Guwahati on Monday.

The 12-15 days voyage will be an integrated Inland Water Transport (IWT) movement via National Waterway-1 (Ganga), NW-97 (Sunderbans), Indo-Bangladesh Protocol (IBP) route and NW-2 (Brahmaputra). This is the first ever containerised cargo movement on this Inland Water Transport (IWT) route.

The latest 1425 kms long IWT movement is aimed at providing a fillip to North East Region’s industrial development by opening up an alternate route for transportation of raw material and finished goods.

Taking ahead the NaMo Govt's vision of promoting IWT, the first consignment of containerized cargo on National Waterway-1 (Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly river system) was received by the Prime Minister on 12 November 2018 when he  dedicated to the nation, the Multi Modal Terminal at Varanasi.

Since then the traffic on NW-1 has grown from 5.48 million tonne in 2017-18 to 6.79 million tonne in 2018-19. Out of the total traffic of 6.79 million tonne on NW-1, approximately 3.15 million tonne is the EXIM trade between India and Bangladesh using the Indo Bangladesh Protocol (IBP) routes.

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