The Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways recently tweeted about mechanization of Berth No. 14 at the New Mangalore Port (NMP) for handling of containers and cargo. The development adds on to the recently launched PM Gati Shakti plan for overall development of India’s multi-modal connectivity.
Berthing systems at ports ensure that there is minimum to no delay between a vessel entering the port, having it’s cargo loaded on unloaded, refueled and inspected and finally, depart from the port. In recent times, port authorities throughout India have pulled in the implementation of technology to reduce turn around time of ships from the moment they enter the port to the moment they exit.
A mechanized berth is typically host to automated loading/unloading systems, advanced load-bearing cranes, specialized truck/trailer docking sites, belt conveyor systems etc. to ensure that the entire operations of cargo handling is smooth as well as vivacious. For instance, the mechanization of Berth No. 14 at NMP aims to reduce turn around time, pre-berthing delay and dwell time for ships entering the port. Thus, reinforcing the fact that transformation from manual to automatic decreases logistics costs, makes supply chains seamless and facilitates multi-modal connectivity.
Similarly, by targeting the steel industry and thermal power plants – which required coking coal, thermal coal, limestone and dolomite – and considering the increasing import dependency of these two major Industries for these commodities, some Indian ports like Paradip Port, Deendayal Port are in process to employ mechanization of berths, which increases their terminal capacity at 20 MMT.
The process of infrastructure development and capacity augmentation via berth mechanization is a ‘work-in-progress’ throughout ports around the country, and the cargo handling capacity of the major ports has gone up to 1534.91 Million Tonnes Per Annum (MTPA) as on 31st March 2020. Port Trusts are also working with private investors in order to give push to the development activities.