Millennium Post

1st direct container for B’desh leaves Krishnapatnam Port

The first direct container vessel to Bangladesh from India left the Krishnapatnam Port on Monday as part of coastal shipping agreement to facilitate trade between both the nations. “Krishnapatnam Port... earmarked a historical moment for India s bilateral trade and commerce as the first direct container vessel, part of coastal shipping agreement to facilitate trade between India and Bangladesh, set sail from the port on 28th March 2016,” KPCL said in a statement.

The trade agreements signed earlier between India and Bangladesh were revived during Prime Minister Narendra Modi s visit to Dhaka last year. “MV Harbour-1 owned by Neepa Paribahan and built by Western Marine Shipyard is the first Bangladesh container vessel to have received the permission from the shipping departments of both the countries,” the statement said.

Krishnapatnam Port Company Ltd (KPCL) Managing Director Chinta Sasidhar said “the service will play a vital role in decongesting the border points and bringing down the cost and transit time involved, thereby providing the best competitive freight rates to the advantage of the industry”.

A standard operating procedure was signed between India and Bangladesh last November to move commercial cargo between the two countries also stating the provisions and procedures to be followed for such movement. To facilitate easy bilateral trade, many conditions have been waived by both countries.

“The vessels of both the countries upon entry into India and Bangladesh shall be treated as domestic vessels and not foreign going vessels. The provision will play a key role in addressing the traffic congestion at Petrapole (India) and Benapole (Bangladesh) the two border points which pose as one of the biggest impediments to the movement of EXIM cargo,” the statement said. 

This will also offer to reduce the paper work required at the customs check points and port dues paid at Indian ports too will be at par with Indian vessels. The vessel and cargo will also enjoy complete Protection and Indemnity (P&I) coverage insuring cargo from the point of loading to the final destination and till the time the parcel reaches the final consignee.

The crews on both vessels are exempted from aligning to international certifications as they are certified as per the provisions of the two countries, the company said adding that both the countries have agreed to reduce customs documentation and other requirements to the essential minimum for the purpose of easier cargo movement. Earlier, shipments from Indian ports being transported to Bangladesh were routed either via Colombo or Singapore. 

“With the launch of the direct service, time taken for such shipments would come down from 2 to 5 days. We are certain that this will not only build the relationship but also reflect positively on exporters and importers of both the countries, ultimately benefiting the end consumers,” said Anil Yendluri, Director and CEO, KPCL. 

The opening of this route will also enable the movement of cargo to the North Eastern states of India through coastal shipping up to Chittagong and thereafter by road or 

inland waterways. Also, the deep draft ports on the eastern coast of India can be ‘hub ports’ for the onward transportation of cargo to Bangladesh through River Sea Vessels (RSV).  Ninety two per cent of the country s export import trade and draw cargo from western, central and southern India heads to Bangladesh. 

“Shipping to ICT Pangaon via KPCT will provide exporters with a smooth, hassle-free, faster transit and cost efficient shipping service. Exporters and importers from Bengaluru, trading with Bangladesh can utilise and benefit by our weekly train service from ICD Bengaluru to KPCT or road services by trailer/truck,” said Vinita Venkatesh, Director, Krishnapatnam Port Container Terminal.

Krishnapatnam Port promoted by the Hyderabad-based CVR Group is a privately built and owned all weather, deep water port on the east coast of India, located in the Nellore District of Andhra Pradesh. 
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