In a bid to promote the Indian shipbuilding industry, the Centre has asked all major ports to procure or charter tug boats that are made in India.

Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya termed it as a step towards ‘Aatmanirbhar Shipping’ under the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ drive.

He also said that the Centre is taking 360-degree actions to revive old shipyards and promote shipbuilding in India.

“It is a step towards bolstering the revival of Indian shipbuilding and a big move towards Aatmanirbhar Shipping in Aatmanirbhar Bharat,” Manadaviya said.

The government will try to create an ecosystem for shipbuilding, ship repair, ship recycling and flagging in India,” he added.

“The Ministry of Shipping is aiming to promote the Indian shipbuilding industry and also have a discussion with some leading countries for Make in India shipbuilding,” the ministry said in a statement.

“All procurements being done by major ports would now need to be carried out as per the revised ‘Make in India’ Order,” the statement added.

The ministry has proposed to set up a Standing Specifications Committee under Managing Director, Indian Ports Association and comprising representatives from Cochin Ship Yard Limited (CSL), Shipping Corporation of India (SCI), Indian Register of Shipping (IRS) and Director General of Shipping.

Standing Specifications Committee would shortlist around five variants/ types of tugs and prepare an ‘Approved Standardized Tug Design and Specifications (ASTDS)’, it said.

This ASTDS would outline specifications, general arrangements, basic calculations, basic structural drawings, key system drawings and other construction standards, etc.

These standards would be vetted by the Standing Specifications Committee and, thereafter, certified in-principle by IRS and published by the Indian Ports Association on its website, it added.

The ministry will also provide some window to major ports so that construction time would be availed.

Recently, the government-owned Cochin Shipyard Limited has also been successful in grabbing the order for two automated vessels from the Norwegian Government.

These will be the first of its kind unmanned vessels.

The ministry said various decisions taken by it will turn around the shipbuilding sector in the near future.

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