AMTOI’s Extended Board holds interactive session with DG Shipping

The Managing Committee and the Extended Board of the Association of Multimodal Transport Operators of India (AMTOT) met here on Tuesday (February 5) and had an interactive session with Mr Gautam Chatterjee, Director-General of Shipping.

It was an endeavour to apprise the DG of the various issues and requirements of the members constituting AMTOI’s Extended Board, which includes CSLA, MANSA, BCHAA, FFFAI, ACAAI, FEDSAI, IPPTA, CAI and INSA. The event was presided over by Mr Shashi Tanna, President of AMTOI, and attended by members of its Managing Committee.

Mr Tanna explained to the DG the work done by AMTOI and the role of the Managing Committee, which was followed by a presentation by Mr Vivek Kele, Honorary Secretary of AMTOI.

In a brief chat with Exim India, Mr Kele said that the interaction covered four areas, i.e. Global Perspective – Logistics Performance Index (LPI); Logistics Industry in India; Multimodal Transport; and Coastal Shipping. LPI, he explained, was based on a worldwide survey of operators on the ground (global freight forwarders and express carriers), providing feedback on the logistics “friendliness” of the countries in which they operate and those with which they trade. India ranked 47th among more than 150 countries, which Mr Kele said was a poor ranking. “We should be among the top 5 or 10.”

The second area was the potential of the Indian logistics sector, which estimates say would be a $ 200-billion industry by 2020.

The third area covered was multimodal transport—its engines, impediments and how DG can help overcome the impediments. The Directorate was requested to facilitate giving industry status to the logistics sector; setting up a regulatory body by the government to look into the concerns of the sectors, which could be DG Shipping; ensuring quick action on policy formulation and adoption to stimulate the sector; encouraging registered Indian MTOs by according first right of refusal for government cargo; establishing more training institutes to attract young graduates to make a career in the logistics industry, etc.

The focus was also on coastal shipping, a neglected area despite its many advantages. The issues touched upon here were lack of infrastructure, no dedicated berths at ports, no separate tariff at private ports, cabotage restrictions on foreign carriers, etc. The aim of AMTOI was to integrate coastal shipping in multimodal transport, it was stressed. One of the facilitative steps would be to allow foreign-going ships of any flag to carry coastal cargo, Mr Kele said.

A wish list was given to Mr Chatterjee who, said Mr Kele, was very attentive and forthcoming, and gave the assurance that he would do whatever was possible within the power of his office to find solutions to the issues raised.

The meeting was attended by AMTOI Managing Committee members and representatives of bodies constituting the Extended Board.

Source : Exim News Service – Mumbai, Feb. 06th, 2013