Nitin Kuncolienkar, former president of the Goa Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), has proposed his revival plan for the barge sector, to put to use barges that are lying idle following the ban on mining.

Mr. Kuncolienkar has claimed that this would drive away the gloom among the owners of around 350 fleets, while increasing the value of the barges.

The barges could be modified for use in tourism, for purposes such as floating restaurants, houseboats, theatres, conference halls, conducting backwater tours, bird watching tours, night clubs, gaming zones, yoga and meditation centres, and spas, he said on Wednesday.

In a letter to the Chief Minister, Mr. Kuncolienkar also suggested that they be used to host weddings, and for hinterland connectivity and transportation of containers to the port. Currently, the movement of containers during the day is prohibited by the Road Transport Department as it congests the roads.

Ownership

His concept could be implemented by making mine owners and the Goa State government venture capitalists in the scheme. The Goa Tourism Development Corporation could take these barges on lease or operate them on a public-private partnership basis or on a revenue sharing model.

An alternative was that barge owners could form co-operative societies to carry out these activities, he said.

He expected this would also revive the confidence of financial institutions in the barge sector.

He has urged the Chief Minister to examine his concept.


  • The barge sector in Goa has been hit by the ban on mining

  • ‘Barges can be used for transportation of containers to the port’


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