India: Government Aims to Expand Port Capacity by 2020
The Government aims to create a port capacity of around 3200 MT by attracting investments to the tune of Rs. 2,87,000 crore to handle the expected traffic of about 2500 MT by 2020 and bring Indian ports on a par with the best international ports in terms of performance and capacity.
This was stated by Shri G.K. Vasan, Union Minister of Shipping while addressing the valedictory function of the Golden Jubilee celebrations of Paradip Port Trust at Paradip in Odisha today.
Addressing the function, Shri Vasan said that Paradip Port successfully crossed 50 years in the promotion of Indian trade and commerce and was blessed by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, who laid the foundation stone of Paradip Port on the 3rd January, 1962. This Port is the first major port on the East Coast commissioned after Independence.
Regarding the connectivity to Paradip Port Shri Vasan said that a new Haridaspur-Paradip rail link was under execution by Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd. which would reduce the rail route from the iron ore mines of Odisha to Paradip making the export more viable apart from reducing congestion. Paradip Port has also contributed equity for the construction of this new Railway line. On completion of the project, there will be considerable reduction of the distance from Bansapani to Paradip and the freight will be reduced by 50%.
Shri Vasan informed that the Port handled 56 million metric tonnes of traffic during 2010-11 comprising of 31.22 million tonnes of import cargo and 24.81 million tonnes of export cargo.
He further stated that the Indian Oil Corporation was establishing a Refinery of 15 MMTPA capacity and a mega Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemicals Investment Region (PCPIR) at Paradip. The construction of 2nd and 3rd Single Point Mooring by IOCL at an estimated cost of Rs. 1492.33 crore, with a capacity of 22 MMTPA is underway. Under private sector participation, one 12 MMTPA integrated pelletisation facility at Paradip based on its strategic locational advantage for importing coal and other raw materials, and exporting pellets through Paradip Port is also being set up.
Shri Vasan informed that the Port had embarked upon an ambitious plan to enhance its capacity to 251 MMTPA by taking up several capacity addition projects, strengthening the rail-road connectivity, and mechanizing / modernizing the existing facilities to meet the requirement of industries.
Some of the capacity addition projects under execution are deepening of channel to handle 1,25,000 DWT vessels at an estimated cost of Rs. 293.36 crore, which is expected to create a capacity addition of 5 Million Tonnes Per Annum, construction of deep draught iron ore berth and coal berth on BOT basis at an estimated cost of Rs. 1070 crore, which would add a capacity of 20 MMTPA.
Some of the major projects that have been scripted for execution in the future include construction of western dock system at an estimated cost of Rs. 2822 crore which is envisaged to create a capacity of 75 MMTPA, mechanization of east quay at an estimated cost of Rs. 917 crore, leading to a capacity addition of 14 MMTPA.
On completion of above projects, the capacity of Paradip Port would reach 251 million metric tonnes per annum by the year 2020, he added.
Shri Srikant Jena, Minister of State (I/C) for Statistics & Programme Implementation & MoS for Chemicals & Fertilizers, Secretary Shipping, Shri K. Mohandas and other dignitaries were also present on this occasion.
World Maritime News Staff, January 13, 2012; Image: PIB