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International Container Transhipment Port in Great Nicobar Island

  • 27 Nov 2023
  • 4 min read

Source: PIB

Why in News?

Recently, the Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways (MoPSW) visited the site of the proposed International Container Transhipment Port (ICTP) at Galathea Bay in Great Nicobar Island.

What are the Key Facts About the ICTP Project?

  • About:
    • The ICTP is a major infrastructure project that aims to facilitate the transshipment of containers between different ports.
      • A transshipment deepwater seaport facilitates the handling of large cargo vessels, featuring a deep water channel and expansive berth areas for efficient loading, unloading, and the seamless transfer of goods between ships at the port.
    • The proposed ICTP at Galathea Bay, Great Nicobar Island, is strategically positioned just 40 nautical miles from the International shipping trade route.
    • The ICTP aims to become a leading container transshipment port by leveraging its strategic location, natural water depth, and capacity for the transshipment of cargo from nearby ports.
  • Significance:
    • In India, nearly 75% of transshipped cargo is handled at ports outside the country.
      • Colombo, Singapore and Klang handle more than 85% of this cargo with 45% of it handled at Colombo Port alone.
    • India is banking on the strategic location of Galathea Bay for export-import trade as it lies on international shipping routes.
  • Benefits:
    • The project is expected to generate forex savings, attract foreign direct investment, and boost economic activity at other Indian ports.
    • It will also contribute to enhanced logistics infrastructure, employment generation, and increased revenue share.
    • The development of this Mega Container Terminal is a part of the holistic development of Great Nicobar Island.
  • Status of the Project:
    • The project has received environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change (MoEF&CC).
      • Stage 1 forest clearance has also been obtained for the project.
    • The project is planned to be developed in four phases, with Phase 1 proposed to be commissioned in the year 2028 with a handling capacity of approximately 4 Million (twenty-foot equivalent units)TEUs.
      • The handling capacity is expected to increase to 16 Million TEUs in the ultimate stage of development by 2058.

Key Facts About Great Nicobar

  • It is the southernmost island of the Nicobar Islands Archipelago.
  • It has tropical evergreen forest ecosystems. It is home to very rich ecosystems.
  • The Great Nicobar Biosphere Reserve harbours a wide spectrum of ecosystems comprising tropical wet evergreen forests, mountain ranges reaching a height of 642 m (Mt. Thullier) above sea level, and coastal plains.
  • The Nicobar Islands are home to two 'Mongoloid' tribes they are the Shompen and Nicobarese.

UPSC Civil Services Examination, Previous Year Question (PYQ)

Prelims

Q1. Which of the following have coral reefs? (2014)

  1. Andaman and Nicobar Islands
  2. Gulf of Kachchh
  3. Gulf of Mannar
  4. Sunderbans

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1, 2 and 3 only
(b) 2 and 4 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans: (a)

Q2. Which one of the following pairs of islands is separated from each other by the ‘Ten Degree Channel’? (2014)

(a) Andaman and Nicobar
(b) Nicobar and Sumatra
(c) Maldives and Lakshadweep
(d) Sumatra and Java

Ans: (a)

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