India launches Direct cargo ferry service to Maldives
A direct cargo ferry service was launched between India and Maldives today, September 21, 2020, to strengthen bilateral relations.
A direct cargo ferry service was launched between India and Maldives today, September 21, 2020, to strengthen bilateral relations. The cargo ferry was jointly e-launched by Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya and Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation of Maldives, Ms Aishath Nahula.
The Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation of Maldives in a tweet today said, "Direct Cargo Ferry Service between India and the Maldives was jointly launched today by Minister @aishath_nahula & Union Minister of State for Shipping @mansukhmandviya"
During its maiden voyage, a vessel with a capacity of 200 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) and 3000 MT(metric tonne) of break bulk cargo will sail from Tuticorin to Kochi today, from where it will proceed to Kulhudhuffushi port in North Maldives and then to Male port.
It is scheduled to reach Kulhudhuffushi on Saturday, September 26, 2020, and Male on September 29, 2020. This ferry service is operated by the Shipping Corporation of India will run twice a month and will provide a cost-effective direct and alternate means of transportation of goods between India and Maldives.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr Mandaviya noted that this service is another milestone in the comprehensive bilateral relations between India and Maldives. He mentioned that this direct cargo service will further cement the close ties between India and Maldives by enhancing people-to-people contact and boosting bilateral trade.
Maldivian Minister for Transport and Civil Aviation Ms Aishath Nahula expressed deep appreciation for the launch of the service as reflective of the close ties of friendship and cooperation between the two countries.
The launch of this service fulfils the commitment made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the Maldives in June last year and the announcement made by External Affairs Minister Dr S. Jaishankar during his virtual meeting with the Foreign Minister of Maldives on August 13, 2020.