Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project
The Kaladan project’s operationalization will bring India one step closer to attaining Act East Policy’s main goal. Discuss
The need • Apart from the Northeast India, this port will also unlock huge commercial potential for Bangladesh, Bhutan and even Nepal - apart from India and Myanmar - by acting as a bridge with the South East Asia. • Sittwe port development is part of the Kaladan Multimodal Transit Transport Project (KMTTP). Once operationalised, the Sittwe port will enable multi modal transit connectivity with the South East Asia. • Sittwe Port has been developed under a framework agreement between India and Myanmar for the construction and operation of a Multimodal Transit Transport Facility on Kaladan river connecting the Sittwe port in Myanmar with the state of Mizoram in India. Connectivity with the Northeast India • From Paletwa in Myanmar to Zorinpui in Mizoram: The Sittwe port connects to Paletwa in Myanmar through an inland waterway and from Paletwa to Zorinpui in Mizoram through a road component. • From Sittwe, Myanmar to Sarboom, Tripura: Goods from Kolkata to Sittwe Port can be shipped to Teknaf Port, Bangladesh which is just 60 nautical miles of Sittwe. From Teknaf Port goods can be transported by road to Sabroom which is 300 kms away. Sabroom has an Integrated customs border between Bangladesh and Tripura. Significance of Kaladan Project • Sittwe port and Kaladan Project will immensely benefit Tripura by way of significant reduction in transportation time and logistics cost.
Significance of Kaladan Project • Sittwe port and Kaladan Project will immensely benefit Tripura by way of significant reduction in transportation time and logistics cost. • Once fully operationalised, Kaladaan Multi Modal Transport TP will provide alternate connectivity from Eastern coast of India to the North-eastern states through the Sittwe port. This is a far more feasible route for the trade and commerce of Northeast India, than the existing route via Siliguri to Kolkata, saving time, money and excelling efficiency. • Cost of transportation of goods from Kolkata to Aizwal will see drop of more than 50% in cost and time when the cargo is sent from Kolkata to Sittwe onto Palletwa and after that via road to Aizwal and the whole of Northeast India. • Similarly, goods from Kolkata to Agartala will incur much lesser cost and time via this route. While the length of road from Kolkata to Agartala is around 1600 kms and takes 4 days via roadways, the Sittwe to Chittagong to Sarboom to Agartala will be done in 2 days, saving cost and time. • In addition to reduction of traffic on the road, the use of marine transport will considerably bring down environmental cost of transport with drop in fossil fuel carbon emission. Major cargo for export for Sittwe Port • Exports from Myanmar include Rice, Timber, Fish and seafood, Petroleum products and Garments and textiles. The major cargo for import for Sittwe Port Imports by Myanmar include construction materials such as cement, steel and bricks among others.
Concerns The largely ambitious and costly project comes with its share of concerns- • The full operation of Chittagong port in Bangladesh might lead to lesser shipments to Sittwe port than expected since Chittagong is better connected with India. • The lack of an environmental impact study is quite concerning, particularly in light of river dredging at the Kaladan River mouth for the barges. • Any dispute between the nations might lead to tensions at the port, which would hinder the movement of products; or if an issue develops in North-East India or Myanmar, such as the Rohingya crisis, it would have an impact on both nations, notably India, which paid for the project. • Both nations are concerned about the project Kalandan’s potential to enhance the likelihood of the illegal trafficking of narcotics, weapons, and other sources.