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India’s first maritime arbitration centre GIMAC


The Gujarat Maritime University signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the International Financial Services Centres Authority in GIFT City to promote the Gujarat International Maritime Arbitration Centre (GIMAC).


GS-III: Industry and Infrastructure (Industrial Growth and Industrial Policies), GS-II: (Government Policies and Interventions)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What is GIFT City?
  2. About GIMAC
  3. What is the Gujarat Maritime Cluster?

What is GIFT City?

  • GIFT (Gujarat International Finance Tec-City), located in Gandhinagar is India’s first International Financial Services Centre.

International Financial Service Centre (IFSC)

  • An IFSC caters to customers outside the jurisdiction of the domestic economy. Such centres deal with flows of finance, financial products and services across borders.
  • An expert panel headed by former World Bank economist Percy Mistry submitted a report on making Mumbai an international financial centre in 2007. However, the global financial crisis in 2008 made countries including India cautious about rapidly opening up their financial sectors.
  • In India, IFSC has been defined in Special Economic Zone (SEZ) Act, 2005.
  • Since India has many restrictions on the financial sector, such as partial capital account convertibility, high SLR (statutory liquidity ratio) requirements and foreign investment restrictions, an SEZ can serve as a testing ground for financial sector reforms before they are rolled out in the entire nation.
  • As per the SEZ Act the Central Government may approve the setting up of an International Financial Service Centre in a Special Economic Zone and may prescribe the requirements for setting up and operation of such centre. The Central Government shall approve only one International Financial Services Centre in a Special Economic Zone.


  • Gujarat International Maritime Arbitration Centre (GIMAC) will be the first centre of its kind in the country that will manage arbitration and mediation proceedings with disputes related to the maritime and shipping sector.
  • The idea is to create a world-class arbitration centre focused on maritime and shipping disputes that can help resolve commercial and financial conflicts between entities having operations in India.
  • The GIMAC will be part of a maritime cluster that the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) is setting up in GIFT City at Gandhinagar.
  • There are over 35 arbitral institutions in India, however, none focus exclusively on the disputes related to the maritime sector, hence the GIMAC will help in this regard with Gujrat continuing to witness a rapid extension in maritime activities and inching closer to becoming a global maritime hub with the implementation of Gujarat Maritime Cluster project.
  • The GIMAC will facilitate faster dispute resolution while improving the attractiveness of GIFT Special Economic Zone (SEZ) and the ease of doing business.

What is the Gujarat Maritime Cluster?

  • Gujarat Maritime Cluster is conceived as a dedicated ecosystem of Ports, Maritime Shipping and Logistics services providers.
  • It will host an array of maritime, shipping industry players and service providers, along with relevant Government regulatory agencies, in GIFT City, Gandhinagar – India’s first International Financial Services Centre (IFSC).
  • It will be a one stop solution for all maritime services while attaining economic growth, employment generation and industry – academia confluence in the region.

-Source: Indian Express

December 2023