Taking note of reduction in the profits of its 12 major ports in the country, the government of India has taken several steps to reduce costs. As a cost cutting measure, the Centre wants to reduce surplus manpower through the Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS). The Union Shipping Minister GK Vasan said this in the Lok Sabha recently. Profit of major ports declined by about 30 per cent to Rs 1,220.61 crore in 2012-13 over the previous fiscal, Vasan said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
In addition to VRS scheme to cut surplus manpower, the government wants to construct new berths and terminals to enhance port capacity, modernising berths with state of the art loading/unloading equipment to improve operational efficiency and initiatives by ports to attract more cargo and increase throughput, he said.
Kolkata, Paradip, Visakhapatnam, Ennore, Chennai, VO Chidambaranar, Cochin, New Mangalore, Mormugao, Mumbai, Jawaharlal Nehru and Kandla, four ports had reported losses in the last fiscal, the Minister said.These include Rs 298 crore, Rs 278 crore, Rs 94 crore and Rs 65 crore losses incurred by Kolkata, Mumbai, Mormugao and Cochin ports respectively in 2012-13 over the previous fiscal.