Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded India as a rising maritime power on Tuesday and asked global investors to join India’s journey towards becoming a prosperous country by 2047.

Modi virtually inaugurated the Global Maritime India Summit (GMIS) 2023, emphasising India’s unique combination of growth, population, democracy, and demand, and pushing investors to grab the opportunity. Global ministers, CEOs, business executives, investors, and politicians will attend the conference in Mumbai. Despite global economic concerns, India is quickly improving its infrastructure, with a concentration on marine development, he added.

India is among few countries that have a strong combination of development, demography, democracy, and demand…I invite investors to come to India and move together on the path of progress and create a new future for all of us,” the prime minister said.

He said that the recently ended G-20 leaders conference in New Delhi made a historic decision to establish an economic corridor connecting India, the Middle East, and Europe, which would serve as a vehicle to alter the global marine sector.

Modi said that construction on the corridor has already begun, including the creation of a next-generation mega port and container transshipment port, and that a strategy for island development, strengthening inland waterway systems, and expanding multi-modal hubs is being developed. According to the prime minister, this corridor will lower corporate costs, increase logistical efficiency, and result in less environmental damage while creating a huge number of employment.

Hundreds of years ago, the silk route paved the way for global trade and became an engine for growth and development for various countries. Now the new economic corridor is also poised to change the picture of regional and global trade,” the prime minister said.

The Prime Minister said that India is aiming to become a developed country in the next 25 years and that major changes in all areas are being implemented to make India an appealing location for investment.

He said that initiatives to build marine infrastructure contributed to doubling the capacity of major ports in India over the previous decade, while ports boosted capacity, lowering container turnaround time from 42 hours in 2014 to less than 24 hours in 2023.

He said that there are several instances of success achieved in India, such as the doubling of coastal freight flow and a fourfold increase in cargo traffic on the interior canal system during the previous decade.

Our vision of ports for prosperity and ports for progress is constantly bringing change on the ground. But our work has also taken the mantra of ports for productivity ahead,” the PM said.

The Prime Minister emphasized India’s development in coastal freight traffic and interior waterway networks, with goals to rank among the top five shipbuilding countries and become a worldwide cruise tourist center.

Modi emphasized efforts to create marine clusters, gather stakeholders, and promote different shipbuilding and repair industries. India is also developing a net-zero policy for key ports to become carbon-neutral, helping to make the world a better place.

Modi urged global maritime businesses to register and operate from Gujarat’s Gift City, which is famed for ship leasing. Gift-IFSC has already registered four worldwide ship leasing firms, proving India’s commitment to encouraging marine investment.