Inland Water Transport to build 37 passenger ships to compete with private rivals

 Inland Water Transport urgently needs to replace its decades-old ships running along the navigable waterways with modern and faster ones to recover from losses.—Photo: www.allthingsburmese.com
Inland Water Transport urgently needs to replace its decades-old ships running along the navigable waterways with modern and faster ones to recover from losses.—Photo: www.allthingsburmese.com

Yangon, 30 Oct— Inland Water Transport is planning to build 37 ships for passengers in attempts to compete with private navigation services across the country.
“We are still practicing the old system and still using the British-colonial era ships,” said U Win Pe, managing director of
Inland Water Transport under the Ministry of Transport.
He told reporters Wednesday that the passenger-cum-cargo ships owned by the IWT are not helpful today to fulfill the demand of passengers as they want to arrive their destinations on time.
The number of navigable transportation service routes operated by IWT has been spirally decreased as the ministry’s decades-old ships experience delays and higher costs and cannot compete with modern ones run by private entrepreneurs, according the ministry.
Meanwhile, Inland Water Transport is facing challenges for transforming its services from public service to a commercial basis with its decades-old ships to be able to stand on its own budget as the new government adopted a new policy.
Inland Water Transport had been operating its transportation at loss and at affordable prices for the people for decades thanks to budget allocations from the successive governments, .
MIWT has been operating passenger and freight services along the navigable waterways in Myanmar and ferry services, with a fleet of more than 400, including 225 powered vessels, 138 passenger-cum-cargo ships, 27 cargo ships, 30 powered barges, one water tender, 22 tugs, one oil tanker, 149 non-powered vessels, 138 cargo barges, 11 oil barges and 39 station pontoons, according to the last year statistics of from the ministry. — GNLM

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