Even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to receive a container vessel in Varanasi, on the banks of the Ganga, on Nov. 12—a first for the nation’s inland waterways—India may have lost an opportunity to operate boats that run on cleaner fuel.
Petronet LNG Ltd., which was tasked with providing liquefied natural gas for barges—or small freight vessels— along the National Waterways-1, said that the project was rendered unviable after the government scaled down requirements. “They have virtually demolished the economics of the project,” Prabhat Singh, chairman and managing director of Petronet LNG, told BloombergQuint. “The number of LNG barges, which the Shipping Ministry (initially) specified was 100. They later reduced it to 40 and then to 6.”
The Ministry of Shipping signed an agreement with the state-run LNG importer and Inland Waterways Authority of India to promote the usage of LNG barges in April 2016 along the National Waterways-1 (from Allahabad to Haldia along the Ganga and Hooghly rivers). Read More