High-capacity, world-class dredgers will be manufactured in India for the first time

To meet the ever-increasing demand to maintain existing major ports and develop new facilities, India has tied up with the largest dredger maker of the world to manufacture the equipment locally under the Make in India initiative.

Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) and Dredging Corporation of India (DCI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Royal IHC Holland BV to meet the projected dredging needs along India's Eastern and Western coasts.

The agreement was signed in the presence of Minister of State for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Mansukh Mandaviya and Ambassador of Netherlands Marten van den Berg on Wednesday.

"As part of Government of India’s thrust on Blue Economy, there is an ever-increasing demand to develop and maintain existing major ports, building new ports, offshore resource exploration, deployment of ultra-mega-size vessels, promotion of tourism, and beach nourishment," said an official statement after the MoU was signed.

India has a coastline of over 7,500 km and there are plans to further develop existing ports and construct new ones, which would entail extensive dredging work.

Dredgers are vessels fitted with special equipment that can increase the depth and size of harbours.

Under the agreement, high-capacity dredgers will be built in India for the first time.

An integrated solution provider, IHC Holland is the world leader with largest market share for the design and construction of dredgers. It is renowned worldwide for quality and performance, the statement said.

Dredging Corporation of India (DCI) controls the majority of the maintenance dredging market in India and dredging services for the major ports.

"With more infrastructure projects on the anvil across the major Ports in India, the requirement of such dredgers in the future can also be met in India once we acquire the expertise," the ministry noted.