Context: On average, an Adani port every 500 Km of coastline; these handle 24% of all cargo, Government share dips. At least two officials and a former regulator flag concern over market concentration in the last 10 years.
- All ports handled by Adani are minor ports.
- In the last 10 years, the total cargo handled by Adani ports jumped nearly four-fold to 337 million tons in FY23 at compounded growth rate of 14% against the industry’s (shipping industry) 4 %.
- The group’s market share in total cargo handled has nearly tripled to 24%, whereas that of Central government-controlled port has dropped to around 54.5% from 58.5% in 2013.
- Amongst ports that are not under the Central government, Adani’s market share has crossed the 50% mark.
- It has an average turnaround time for ships which is around 0.7 days whereas for government-controlled turnaround time is around 2 days.
- Mundra Port is India’s first private port and largest container port, located on the northern shores of the Gulf of Kutch near Mundra, Kutch district, Gujarat.
- Formerly operated by Mundra Port and Special Economic Zone Limited (MPSEZ) owned by Adani Group.
- It was later expanded into Adani Ports & SEZ Limited (APSEZ), managing several ports.
- The deep draft, all-weather port is the largest commercial port in India with state-of-the-art infrastructure,
- Largest Coal Import Terminal which gives faster cargo evacuation and minimal turnaround time.
Risk associated with rise of Adani ports as per officials.
- Substantive risk of high market concentration.
- Low competition.
- High entry barriers for newer and smaller players.
- Higher chances of abuse of dominant position.
- Ports are an essential part of the maritime environment and are like hubs that link sea routes with trade routes on land.
- There are 12 major ports and 217 non-major ports (minor ports) in the country.
- While the Major Ports are under the administrative control of the Ministry of Shipping, the non-major ports are under the jurisdiction of respective State Maritime Boards/ State Governments.
- All the 12 Major Ports are governed under the Major Port Authorities Act, 2021.
- All the Non-Major Ports (minor ports) are governed under the Indian Ports Act of 1908 and regulates the berths, stations, anchoring, fastening, mooring, and unmooring of vessels.
- Major ports are included in the Indian Constitution’s Union list.
- The Government of India appoints a Board of Trustees to oversee each major port. Their responsibilities include port development, management, and operations.
Read also: List of Major important ports in India