Government amends port policy to speed up development

Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Tuesday made some amendments in its port development policy to effectively implement it, including reducing wharfage fee by 50 per cent. The decisions were taken in a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. A CM Office statement said, "Earlier wharfage fee, which was three times, will be reduced to 1.5 times. For greenfield port or multi-purpose jetty, the concessionagreement period has been increased from 35 years to 50 years. For this, the developer has to have 100 per cent capital investment for a period of 35 years and achieve target of 50 per cent cargo handling."

Permission has also been given for import and export of cargo from multi-purpose jetties and cargo handling within the country from captive jetties. The jetties belonging to Maharashtra Maritime Board can be used for passenger or Ro-Ro (roll on roll off) transport, tourism, marine training and research, the statement said. In another decision, the cabinet approved a proposal to waive off stamp duty for transfer of government land for public utility purposes. A scheme of self help groups for minority women in Marathwada and Vidarbha has also been sanctioned, it said. The Mahila Arthik Vikas Mahamandal (MAVIM) will start 2,800 SHGs in Aurangabad, Nagpur and Amravati divisions for minority community women, for which funds will be provided. In another decision, in drought and Naxal affected districts, grant would be given for irrigation and farming, and a provision of Rs 450 crore will be made, the statement informed.

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