Brain Booster for UPSC & State PCS Examination (Topic: Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020)

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Topic: Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020

Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020

Why in News?

  • Recently, Parliament passed the Major Port Authorities Bill, 2020.It seeks to replace the Major Port Trusts Act, 1963.

Key Highlights of the Bill

  • With a view to promote the expansion of port infrastructure and facilitate trade and commerce, the bill aims at decentralizing decision making and to infuse professionalism in governance of major ports.
  • It imparts faster and transparent decision making benefiting the stakeholders and better project execution capability.
  • The Bill is aimed at reorienting the governance model in central ports to landlord port model in line with the successful global practice. This will also help in bringing transparency in operations of Major Ports.
  • It will empower the Major Ports to perform with greater efficiency on account of full autonomy in decision making and by modernizing the institutional framework of Major Ports.
  • The Bill will apply to the major ports of Chennai, Cochin, Jawaharlal Nehru Port, Kandla, Kolkata, Mumbai, New Mangalore, Mormugao, Paradip, V.O. Chidambaranar, and Vishakhapatnam.

Major Port Authorities Board

  • Under the 1963 Act, all major ports are managed by the respective Board of Port Trusts that have members appointed by the central government.
  • The Bill provides for the creation of a Board of Major Port Authority for each major port.

Composition of Board

  • The Board will comprise of a Chairperson and a deputy Chairperson, both of whom will be appointed by the central government on the recommendation of a selection committee.
  • It will include one member each from (i) the respective state governments, (ii) the Railways Ministry, (iii) the Defence Ministry, and (iv) the Customs Department.
  • The Board will also include two to four independent members, and two members representing the interests of the employees of the Major Port Authority.

Corporate Social Responsibility

  • The Bill provides that the Board may use its funds for providing social benefits.
  • This includes development of infrastructure in areas such as education, health, housing, and skill development.
  • These benefits could be provided for the Board’s employees, customers, business partners, local communities, environment and the society at large.

Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects

  • The Bill defines PPP projects as projects taken up through a concession contract by the Board.
  • For such projects, the Board may fix the tariff for the initial bidding purposes.
  • The appointed concessionaire will be free to fix the actual tariffs based on market conditions, and other conditions as may be notified.
  • The revenue share in such projects will be on the basis of the specific concession agreement.

Adjudicatory Board

  • An Adjudicatory Board has been proposed to be created to carry out the residual function of the erstwhile TAMP for Major Ports, to look into disputes between ports and PPP concessionaires, to review stressed PPP projects and suggest measures to review stressed PPP projects and suggest measures to revive such projects and to look into complaints regarding services rendered by the ports/ private operators operating within the ports.