Shreyas Shipping and Logistics has introduced a direct feeder link between India and the Middle East.
From the Port of Visakhapatnam on India's southeastern coast, the fortnightly service feeds into global transshipment connections available at Jebel Ali in Dubai. The new service began with the 1,613-TEU SSL Gujarat, which was added to Shreyas’ fleet last month, calling at Visakha Container Terminal on Feb. 6.
"The export-import cargo for Gulf countries presently being transshipped at Colombo (Sri Lanka) will get transshipped at Visakhapatnam and shipped out directly from here," the feeder line said in a statement.
The company said the regional service, currently using two ships, including the SSL Mumbai, will soon be upgraded to a weekly frequency with the addition of a third vessel.
“The service will cater to the movement of domestic containers between Indian ports, coastal export-import transshipment containers and direct liner cargoes to and from the Arabian Gulf countries,” Shreyas said.
Shreyas, part of Mumbai-based Transworld Group, has augmented its fleet in recent months with a plan to create a pan-India feeder network connecting major container ports on the east and west coasts.
"The vision of Shreyas Shipping is very much in line with the vision of the Ministry of Shipping for Indian coastal shipping, and we have been following the directives for the growth of this efficient and cost-effective mode for transporting goods within the country without adding to traffic woes,” said R.S. Ramakrishnan, director of business planning at Transworld.
VCT, a joint venture between DP World and J.M. Baxi Group, is in the midst of a $102 million expansion that will help double its capacity to 1 million 20-foot-equivalent units a year when completed in 2016-17. The private terminal handled 263,000 TEUs in fiscal year 2013-14, which ended in March, up from 247,000 TEUs in the previous year.