New Delhi, Dec 11 - India will connect with Asean countries through cruise tourism and a new cruise port is being built in Mumbai for this, Road Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari said.
Speaking at the India-Asean Connectivity Summit, which focuses on enhancing connectivity with Asean countries, the minister said the government was encouraging cruise tourism.
"We are planning to create a cruise tourism (network) which can be connected to Asean countries," Gadkari said.
"This year, 80 cruise ships came to Mumbai. We are spending Rs 1,000 crore and building a cruise terminal. After five years, 950 cruise ships will come to Mumbai," he said.
Gadkari also said that the work of dredging had started on Brahmaputra river for developing a water transport channel up to Bangladesh. This will further connect India to Myanmar and other Asean countries.
"We have started work in Brahmaputra. After Bangladesh, through Brahmaputra, we can go up to Myanmar."
The summit comes ahead of the visit of the leaders of the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) here next month for the commemorative summit of 25 years of the India-Asean dialogue partnership.
The Asean comprises Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.