Why In News?
Jogighopa, a small town in Assam, is set to become India’s gateway to South-East Asia as well as the rest of the North-East with the road ministry gearing up to develop a multimodal logistics park (MMLP) there with road, rail, waterways and air transport facilities.
FACTS FOR PRELIMS
About the Project
i)A special purpose vehicle, backed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), will be created to execute the project, which will be executed in two phases.
ii)Under the project, all four types of transportation—road, rail, air and waterways—will be available.
iii) The road ministry has shortlisted 35 MMLPs across India, of which four are being executed in collaboration with ADB.
The announcement of the Northeast Economic Corridor under the Bharatmala programme of the road ministry and the signing of the MoU (memorandum of understanding) between India and Bangladesh for developing the Dalu-Tura-Goalpara-Gelephu multimodal trade route strengthen Jogighopa’s case for MMLP.
The current transit corridors from mainland India to the North-East region pass through an area known as the “Chicken’s Neck”—a narrow tract of land in India between the borders with Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan.
It will provide an alternative route for providing connectivity to the rest of India—a route with adequate expansion potential.
Also, the move will drive freight movement in the region and facilitate trade between India and Bangladesh, and between Bangladesh and Bhutan through India.
Since last year the government has started prioritizing the logistics sector by granting it infrastructure status and anticipates major investments in it. The Logistic Performance Index published by the World Bank shows India jumping 19 spots in the global ranking from 54 in 2014 to 35 in 2016.
The road ministry plans to develop around 35 multimodal logistics parks in India that would cater to 50% of the freight movement, enable a 10% reduction in transportation costs and a 12% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. Of these, pre-feasibility studies for six locations have already been initiated.