Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) and Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for jointly developing infrastructure for fuels, lubricating oil, LPG, natural gas and any other related fuel and gas for meeting the requirement of Indian Waterways.
The MoU seeks to provide for an understanding over general modalities of mutual cooperation leading to addressing futuristic demand of any form of energy for Inland Waterways and associated services.
The MoU also covers development of infrastructure for receipt, storage, dispensing and supply of fuels, lubricating oils, LPG (for domestic & commercial use), Natural Gas and any other related fuel and gas.
In addition, the MoU will cover infrastructure development for setting up Consumer Pump (for supplying fuels to vehicles, locomotives, machinery & equipments etc.) and Retail Outlets (for fuel & gas) at Terminals/ Multimodal terminals. This is expected to lead to development of business activities along the National Waterways.
IWAI and IOCL have agreed to conduct techno-economic feasibility studies for preparation of detailed land requirement, storage facilities and other supporting infrastructure with details of the cost. These studies will be based on the traffic potential, proximity to the local industries and waterways and its connectivity to rail heads.
In this regard, IWAI will be sharing necessary inputs and available data / information relating to National Waterways and its terminals with IOCL for implementing projects. IWAI will also provide land to IOCL on long term lease basis for developing facilities at existing terminals within the approved guidelines of land lease policy of the Government.
As per National Waterways Act 2016, 106 new National waterways have been declared in addition to existing five National Waterways. The development of new National Waterways is being taken up in a phased manner based on the feasibility reports and DPRs.
Meanwhile, the capacity augmentation of NW-1 has been taken up under Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP) with the technical and financial assistance of the World Bank.
Under the JMVP, multimodal terminals are being developed at Haldia, Sahibganj, Varanasi and Intermodal terminals are being developed at Ghazipur and Kalughat. Also, Least Assured Depth (LAD) will be provided between Haldia and Varanasi for safe navigation of vessels.