October 25, 2021

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Panel to frame rules for private companies building logistics parks

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NEW DELHI: The Centre has set up an inter-ministerial committee to draw up the framework for inviting private players to build logistics parks in the country.

The committee will be headed by secretary, ministry of road transport and highways Giridhar Aramane.

Other members include officials from departments of economic affairs and financial services, commerce, industry and legal affairs, and Niti Aayog and the National Highways Authority of India, a senior official close to developments said.

“We are now in the process of forming an inter-ministerial committee for public-private partnership in logistics parks,” the official told ET.

There is no concession agreement for PPP for developing logistics parks, the official said, adding that the committee will help drive that.

The panel will hold consultations with private companies next month on the proposed framework.

ET reported on December 15 that the highways ministry was working to invite private players to build multi-modal logistics parks (MMLPs), with the earliest bids likely to be awarded in the April-June quarter of next year.

The government had given approvals for around 35 multi-modal logistics parks (MMLPs) as part of Bharatmala, its flagship highways development programme. The planning work on two such parks, one in Chennai and the other in Nagpur, is underway.

After several inter-ministerial meetings, amid a lack of clarity on which central government department should drive the development of MMLPs, NHAI has been given the onus, with the government focussed on developing logistics parks as a means to reduce the cost of logistics in the country.

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented disruption of global and domestic supply chains, drawing attention to the crucial role of logistics in maintaining essential supplies such as food and medical goods, the Asian Development Bank said in a recent report on logistics parks.

“The need for an efficient and resilient logistical system that can weather disruptions such as the pandemic is being keenly felt by governments round the world,” the report added.

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