The Port of Authority of Thailand (PAT) is currently developing the Ranong Port as a logistics gateway between Thailand and India. The two countries have agreed to promote a new maritime route in the Andaman Sea between Krishnapatnam Port in India and Ranong Port on the Andaman coast.
The first phase of the port’s development will see Ranong’s Port handling capacity increase from 78,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs)/year to 300,000 TEUs/year by 2020 and to 500,000 TEUs/year by 2022.
It is expected that travel time between India and Thailand will be reduced from 10 to 15 days to seven, resulting in reduced logistics costs and increased trade flows between the two countries.
The two ports signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in August 2019. The MoU is part of the Thai government’s policy to boost trade with India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka under the framework of Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC). BIMSTEC is a regional organization comprising seven Member States lying in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal constituting a contiguous regional unity. This sub-regional organization came into being in 1997 through the Bangkok Declaration. It constitutes seven Member States: five deriving from South Asia, including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and two from South East Asia, including Myanmar and Thailand. A BIMSTEC Free Trade Agreement is currently being negotiated. A draft was ready in 2015 but has been revisited on call from some member countries.
(Source: Bangkok Post)