Indian Minister of Road Transport & Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari has said that India and Germany are all set to collaborate on projects for improving rail connectivity of Indian ports.
He said the two countries will work together on projects worth Rs one lakh crore being implemented by the Indian Port Rail Corporation Ltd (IPRCL).
The Minister held detailed discussions with his German counterpart and Infrastructure Minister Alexander Dobrindt and his delegation in New Delhi today, regarding the modalities for such collaboration.
Secretary Shipping Rajive Kumar, Secretary Road Transport & Highways Shri Sanjay Mitra and other Senior Officers of the two Ministries were also present. The meeting comes under the backdrop of an MoU signed between Indian Port Rail Corporation Ltd (IPRCL) and the German Railways Deutsche Bahn (DB) for cooperation on modernization of rail port connectivity and port rail facilities of Indian ports, during the Maritime India Summit earlier this year.
For efficient evacuation of cargo from the Ports and to reduce logistics cost, last mile rail connectivity of Ports is extremely important. Indian port Rail Corporation Ltd. has been set up specifically to work in this area.
It was proposed in the meeting to form groups with representatives of IPRCL and DB to identify areas of cooperation and potential projects, as also to identify cost effective new rail technologies that can be implemented. This would help bring in foreign investment and cost effective, environment friendly, innovative technology for the port rail connectivity projects.
Gadkari further informed that Germany has also been invited to cooperate in the development of inland waterways, including manufacturing of barges.
In the transport sector, discussions were held on cooperation for developing vehicle scrapping capacity in India. India has invited Germany to share environment friendly technology for scrapping of old vehicles and also for processing of the waste thus generated.
In what may be a major step towards reducing pollution, Gadkari informed the German Minister that India has put in place all required regulations for the use of Flex-fuel like ethanol mixed with petrol. He said that German automobile manufacturers can be called upon to produce cars that can run on flex-fuel for India, like the ones being produced in Canada and USA.
Gadkari has expressed confidence and hope that the cooperation between the two countries will grow even further in the times to come.