Kochi | Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan today expressed keen interest in the cruise tourism promotion activities of Cochin Port Trust and assured the Centre’s support for the new project planned at Ernakulam wharf to accommodate cruise vessels in the most professional manner comparable to international standards.
Reviewing the functioning of the Port Trust here, the Minister of State for Highways and Shipping also noted that the prospects of domestic cruise tourism in India with cruise ships home-porting at Cochin are high.
He observed that there are new opportunities for the Port with prospective cruise liners showing interest in the Colombo-Cochin-Male-Colombo circuit and those connecting Mumbai and Male calling on Cochin en route.
The Minister appreciated initiatives by the Port to implement RFID based Gate Access System and Online Berth Allotment System towards facilitating trade and enhance efficiency.
He noted that with the waiver of penal interest, the creditworthiness of Cochin Port has been enhanced for the Port to vigorously pursue new projects.
Pravir Krishn, Joint Secretary (Ports) noted that the hurdles faced by the Port are of short term nature, and that the Port should aggressively promote industrial manufacturing and related activities in its vast land area.
He wanted Cochin Port to go for sizeable projects leveraging the Smart City project initiated by the Port.
The official also directed Cochin Port Trust to prepare a futuristic 10-year plan to sustain itself in a profitable manner.
The Minister appreciated the efforts of Cochin Port on Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and directed the Port to carry out zoning of its areas towards focussed attention involving all the stakeholders including employees, trade and community.
He also directed that efforts made may be documented towards demonstrating the effect of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
The Minister also directed that Swachh Bharat Abhiyan results may be apprised to the PMO.