India eyeing 5 pc global market share in ship-building by 2017

"Ship-building in the country has a high growth potential owing to certain inherent strengths like low labour costs, strong domestic demand, a well established steel and manufacturing industry and availability of technically qualified manpower," Vasan said in his speech on the inaugural day of the international maritime technology conference here.

From about one per cent of the global ship-building market, India is targeting a global share of five per cent by 2017, he said.

"There are tremendous opportunities in the port and maritime sector for investments given India's robust economic growth and ever increasing demand for energy," he said adding energy demand supply gap and low per capita steel consumption will cause India to depend on the import of thermal and coking coal to meet its energy and steel needs.

Vasan said many upcoming power plants are expected to be located in coastal areas and will depend on imported coal from Indonesia, Australia and other countries.

"Imports of coal and oil will be one of the key drivers of development in the port and shipping sector. This will provide immense opportunities for construction of new terminals, captive jetties and for acquisition of tankers, LNG and bulk carriers," he said.

Vasan said private partnership is the key feature of the port development program and "we are expecting much of the investment to come in from private sector with a high proportion from overseas investors in the coming days," he said.

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