Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) will set-up the country's first international maritime services cluster at GIFT City. The maritime cluster will be developed as a dedicated ecosystem comprising ports, shipping, logistics services providers and government regulators, all present in the same geographic vicinity — GIFT City. The cluster will further leverage the proximity and accessibility of these stakeholders to enable a synergetic collaboration, GIFT City said in a statement. "Establishing a maritime cluster is a much-needed step towards advancing India's credentials and economic viability in this sector," said Tapan Ray, MD and Group CEO, GIFT City.
GIFT City is India's first operational smart city and international financial services centre (IFSC). Avantika Singh, vice-chairman and CEO of GMB, said this will be the first-of-its-kind commercial maritime services cluster in India which has been conceptualised to enhance competitiveness and self-sufficiency in the maritime sector and provide one-stop solutions.
"GIFT City provides us with a seamless environment to create a robust maritime fraternity and strengthen its value chain. "GIFT City has state-of-the art infrastructure and world-class banking facilities and institutions, that will be beneficial for fostering innovation, economic viability, collaboration and business opportunities for the cluster," she added. The cluster intends to host an array of maritime industry players, including government regulators, to ensure 'ease of doing business' for the cluster members; shipping associations and businesses; intermediate services providers — shipping finance, marine insurance, maritime arbitrators, maritime law firms — and support services providers such as maritime education institutes. The cluster also intends to house an alternate dispute resolution (ADR) centre, focused on maritime / shipping. This will ensure economic benefits and ease of doing business for the maritime fraternity, which currently has to depend on international arbitration centres. The Gujarat Maritime University, a premier institute for maritime education, is also coming up at the GIFT City, the statement added.
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