According to the Ministry of Shipping, around 95 per cent of India's trading by volume and 70 per cent by value is done through maritime transport. India has 12 major and 205 notified minor and intermediate ports.
During FY18, cargo traffic at major ports in the country was reported at 679.36 million tonnes (MT). Cargo traffic at non-major ports was estimated at 491.95 million tonnes in FY18 and grew at 9.2 per cent CAGR between FY07-18.
The major ports had a capacity of 1,452 million tonnes by FY18 end. The Maritime Agenda 2010-20 has a 2020 target of 3,130 MT of port capacity.
Net profit at major ports has increased from Rs 1,150 crore (US$ 178.4 million) in FY13 to Rs 3,413 crore (US$ 529.6 million) in FY18 while operating margin increased from 23 per cent to 44 per cent. The capacity addition at ports is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5-6 per cent till 2022, thereby adding 275-325 MT of capacity.
The Indian government has envisioned a total of 189 projects for modernization of ports involving an investment of Rs 1.42 trillion (US$ 22 billion) by the year 2035.
Ministry of Shipping has set a target capacity of over 3,130 MMT by 2020.
India's cargo traffic handled by ports is expected to reach 1,695 million metric tonnes by 2021-22, according to a report.
There are currently 515 vessels which support the industry, with a GRT of 7.06 million, and together they work to support 8% of the entire trading activities in the world market. India has the 14th-largest fleet in the world, in terms of deadweight tonnage, with about 1 in 4 ships engaged in overseas trade. The average output per ship in 2018 was 14,900 tons in 2018.
Petroleum, lubricant, and oils are the most common products handled by the shipping industry in India, accounting for 33.7% of the total cargo handled. Container shipping comes in second, responsible for 19.7% of activities. This is followed by steam coal (13.7%), coking (7.6%), and Iron Ore (6.7%).