Panaji, Jan 9: The Goa government plans to encourage upgradation of private jetties, which can be used to off-load cargo transported through inland waterways, a state minister said on Thursday.
This will not only decongest the highways, but it will also revive the barge business, which has been lying dormant after the closure of mines in the state, state port minister Michael Lobo said.
Lobo met Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Thursday along with the industry stakeholders including industrialist Srinivas Dempo and former President of Goa Barge Owners’ Association Atul Jadhav.
If the existing private jetties are upgraded, inland waterways can be used to transport cargo, thus taking the load off the roads, Lobo said.
Funds to the tune of Rs 100 crore would be sought from the Union Shipping Ministry and Finance Ministry to improve the infrastructure near these jetties, he said.
At least 100-odd barges, which remain unused after the shutting of mining activities in Goa, can be upgraded to ferry the inter-state cargo, the minister suggested.
Apart from coal, other cargo can be brought into Goa from neighbouring states such as Gujarat, he added.
“The same cargo is currently being transported by trucks. Once, jetties are upgraded, road traffic can be reduced significantly,” he said.
The state government would submit a Detailed Project Report to ascertain the viability of these facilities, after which the Centre would be approached for funds, Dempo said.
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