Port Townships and Make-in-India Vessels: A two-pronged approach for India’s Maritime Future

Unnati More Jul 02, 2024 0

This investment is aimed at developing port townships around major ports and promoting the manufacturing of inland vessels as part of the “Make in India” initiative.

Project Highlights:

The Shipping Ministry of India is setting sail on a two-pronged strategy to revitalize coastal areas and boost domestic shipbuilding. Under this strategy, the Indian government is planning a significant investment of INR 5000 Crore. This scheme is designed to enhance the country’s maritime infrastructure, boost local manufacturing, and improve economic activity around port areas.

Here’s a breakdown of the plans:

Port Townships:

Major ports in India have vast swathes of vacant land lying unused. This underutilized space can be a drag on the surrounding areas. To address this, the government is crafting a new township policy. This will allow private companies to bid to develop these lands into townships near key ports like Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, and Visakhapatnam. The aim is to create planned communities with residences, businesses, and other amenities.

Also Read: India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEEC)

Port Townships


Ports are vital hubs for trade and logistics, and developing townships around them can create self-sustaining communities that support port operations. This includes residential areas, commercial zones, and industrial facilities. Consequently, living standards will be improved, as well as trade and commercial activities will increase. Moreover, the proximity to ports will reduce transportation and logistics costs.

Key Features

  1. Integrated Townships: These will include housing, schools, hospitals, and recreational facilities to support the port workforce.
  2. Industrial Zones: Areas designated for industries related to shipping, logistics, and manufacturing.
  3. Commercial Hubs: Development of retail and business centers to boost economic activity.

The Potential Impact

Illustration of Port Townships

Economic Growth: Development near ports can attract new businesses and industries, leading to job creation and economic growth in these regions.

Improved Infrastructure: Building townships may lead to better infrastructure development, including roads, water supply, and sanitation facilities, benefitting not just the new residents but also the existing ones.

Social Development: Townships can provide much-needed social infrastructure like schools and hospitals. This will improve the overall quality of life for people living near ports.

Also Read: A Look at India’s Top Upcoming Ambitious Infrastructure Projects

Make in India: Inland Vessels

The “Make in India” initiative aims to boost domestic manufacturing and reduce dependence on foreign-built vessels. This scheme specifically targets the production of inland vessels, which are crucial for riverine and coastal transport.

Currently, India relies heavily on imported inland vessels, used for cargo movement on rivers and canals. This is an opportunity missed for domestic manufacturing. The proposed INR 5,000 Crore scheme under a Viability Gap Funding (VGF) program will provide financial support to Indian shipbuilders for constructing inland vessels.

Make in India: Inland Vessels

The Potential Impact

The VGF scheme can significantly incentivize domestic shipbuilding, creating new jobs and expertise in the maritime sector. Manufacturing inland vessels in India will reduce dependence on imports, saving valuable foreign exchange. The success of this scheme can pave the way for supporting the construction of even larger vessels, including seafaring ships and even cruise liners.

Moreover, this two-pronged approach can lead to the overall development of India’s coastal regions. Port townships will create new economic hubs, while Make in India vessels will boost domestic manufacturing and reduce import reliance. The success of these initiatives can position India as a strong player in the maritime sector.

Key Elements

  1. Financial Incentives: Subsidies and tax incentives for manufacturers.
  2. Technological Support: Access to advanced technologies and training programs.
  3. Regulatory Framework: Simplified regulations to facilitate manufacturing and registration of vessels.

Financial Allocation and Management

The total proposed budget for this scheme is INR 5000 Crore, divided between township development and the promotion of inland vessel manufacturing. Of the total amount, INR 3,000 Crore is reserved for township development, whereas the remaining INR 2,000 Crore will be invested in inland vessel manufacturing.

A dedicated task force will be established to oversee the implementation of the scheme. This will include representatives from the central and state governments, as well as industry experts.

Also Read: Top 10 Upcoming Mega Projects in India

Make in India Vessels Scheme

Challenges and Mitigation Strategies:


  1. Land Acquisition: Securing land for township development can be challenging due to existing settlements and land ownership issues.
  2. Environmental Concerns: Ensuring sustainable development without harming the local ecosystem.
  3. Skilled Workforce: Availability of skilled labor for both construction and vessel manufacturing.

Mitigation Strategies

To address these challenges, the government will engage local communities and stakeholders in the planning process. This ensures their voices are heard and their concerns addressed. Additionally, adopting sustainable practices in construction and manufacturing will help protect the environment. This approach promotes long-term benefits. Establishing training centers is also crucial. These centers will develop a skilled workforce to meet industry demands.

Things to Watch:

  • The specific details of the township policy and the VGF scheme are still being formulated. It will be crucial to ensure transparency and fair competition in the bidding process for developing townships.
  • The success of the Make in India vessels scheme will depend on the efficiency of disbursing VGF funds and ensuring shipbuilders meet quality and safety standards


This INR 5000 Crore scheme, under the “Make in India” initiative, represents a significant step towards enhancing India’s maritime infrastructure. It holds promise for the future of India’s coastal regions. By creating new townships and supporting domestic shipbuilding, the government is aiming to unlock immense potential for economic growth and job creation. The scheme aims to create a robust and self-reliant maritime sector by focusing on integrated development and local manufacturing. It will further contribute to the nation’s overall development.

Also Read: NHSRCL’s High-Speed Rail (Bullet Train) Projects

Port Townships and Make in India Vessels


Townships around ports, Rs 5000 crore scheme for Make in India inland vessels in works

India Working On Plan To Encourage Construction Of Inland Vessels To Develop Blue Economy

Shipping Ministry Reveals Townships, ₹5,000 Cr Make in India Scheme for Inland Vessels – MARKET TODAY BusinessToday

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Disclaimer: The information herein is based upon information obtained in good faith from sources believed to be reliable. All such information and opinions can be subject to change. Furthermore, the image featured in this article is for representation purposes only. It does not in any way represent the project. If you wish to remove or edit the article, please email editor@biltrax.com.


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