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  • ଓଡ଼ିଆରେ ପଢନ୍ତୁ
Sanjeev Kumar Patro

News Highlights

  • Frequent reports of cargo theft from rail wagons, especially pig iron pilferage.
  • The State may indulge in the facilitation of regular interactions between the industry, transporters’ unions, and labour unions to jointly address issues, thereby enabling logistics ease.
  • Ranks are poor in Trade infrastructure for the export scheme, which is a job intensive sector.

Odisha has been ranked at 7th place in the LEADS index released by the Union Ministry of Commerce today.

As per the LEADS Index, Odisha scored a score of 3.28 in 2021 vis-a-vis 3.18 in 2019. The State stands taller in the whole of the eastern region by breaking into the top 10 leagues.

"Odisha is ranked seventh in 2021 index compared to 10th in 2019 index i.e., an increase of three places. The State has scored high in the parameters of Objective Assessment of States’ Logistics Eco-system and Timeliness of Cargo Delivery with respect to Terminal Services. The State has set up State Level Single Window Clearance Authority to provide approvals for all projects resulting in an increase in the availability of infrastructure in the State," says the report.

Industrialisation Bumps In Odisha?

As per the LEADS index, the State has scored low in Reasonableness of Road Freight Rates and Terminal Services. This is evident from the industry interaction where stakeholders have highlighted hurdles faced due to transport unions and shortage of labour.

It further added that there are still many issues faced by the logistics sector in the State such as transport unions, cargo thefts and lack of robust institutional mechanism.

"Odisha needs to take care of the shortcomings in its logistics sector," the report observed.

Quality Checks

While the index has rated the quality of road infrastructure in Odisha as just average, it outlined a particular instance of a poor show.

  • The road (NH-5A and SH-12) connecting to the Paradip Port is highly congested and in sub-standard condition.
  • Frequent reports of cargo theft from rail wagons, especially pig iron pilferage.
  • The anti-competition practices by the transport Unions increase the transport cost from and to the Port of Paradip
  • Labour availability is a concern in Paradip and Rourkela as the wages charged by them are very high
  • Power and rake allocation by the Indian railways is a key concern. There is an insufficient supply of rakes in relation to the daily demand. Priority is accorded to Coal and then to other commodities.

Scale Up Odisha

The report has the following recommendation for the State to scale up high.

  • The State may consider the Preparation of State Logistics Master Plan for driving greater coordination between cross-sector implementing agencies for targeted outcomes and focused central government support.
  • The State may indulge in the facilitation of regular interactions between the industry, transporters’ unions, and labour unions to jointly address issues, thereby enabling logistics ease.
  • The State may coordinate with IWAI for allowing Steel Industry to transport its cargo through NW-5.
  • The State may consider the implementation of long-pending enhancement of rail capacity from Mines to the Port, e.g., Talcher to Paradip. Due to a shortage of rail capacity, coal is transported by road, leading to higher costs and higher loss of cargo and theft cases on route

The LEADS Index has clearly called for improvement of the logistics infra and services in the State.

  • The quality of road infra in Odisha is just average.
  • Below average in quality of warehousing infra.
  • Fares poor in safety and security during transportation.
  • Fared very poor in ease of doing business, logistics enabling initiatives
  • Ranks are poor in Trade infrastructure for the export scheme.

The Logistics Ease Across Different States (LEADS) index is prepared by the Union Ministry of Commerce. It ranks a state on the parameters of total road length and quality, length of railway track, the port and container infra, warehouse, air cargo and cold storage capacity, logistics training centres and logistics skill training etc.

 

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