News: The Ministry of Shipping has issued the draft of Coastal Shipping Bill, 2020 for suggestions from the stakeholders and general public.
- About the Bill: The Ministry of Shipping has drafted a Coastal Shipping Bill, 2020 in lieu of part XIV of the Merchant Shipping Act,1958.
- Key highlights of the Bill:
- The definition of coastal shipping and coastal waters has been expanded.
- It is proposed to do away with the requirement of trading licence for Indian flag vessels for coastal trade.
- The Bill seeks to create a competitive environment and reduce transportation costs, while encouraging Indian vessels to increase their share in coastal shipping.
- The Bill also proposes integration of coastal maritime transport with inland waterways.
- There is a provision for a National Coastal and Inland Shipping Strategic Plan.