Nicaragua Canal Construction Works Poised to Start in August

The construction on the fuel terminal and a ship wharf within the USD 50-billion Nicaragua canal project is set to start in August, Bloomberg reports citing the project contractor HKND Group.

According to HKND Group Vice President KW Pang, the construction is part of building a port facility for importing machinery needed for “major works” such as dredging and financing would come from debt and equity sales and a potential IPO, Bloomberg writes.

As disclosed, the financing is not dependent on the economic situation in China and would see financial backing from numerous international investors.

The construction was scheduled to start in 2015 and was expected to be completed in five years with the canal becoming operational by 2020.

However, the project start on the construction of locks and the big excavations was delayed as HKND Group said it needed more time to fine-tune the design of the project.

Nicaragua Grand Canal is a proposed 172-mile waterway, 230 to 520 metres wide and 27.6 metres deep, making it longer, wider and deeper than the 51-mile Panama Canal to the south.

Based on the project design, it should include 6 sub projects: the Canal (including locks), 2 ports, a free trade zone, holiday resorts, an international airport and several roads. In addition, there will be construction of a power station, cement factory, steel factory and other related facilities.

HKND Group received an environmental permit from the Government of Nicaragua for the canal project in November 2015 having determined that it would have a positive environmental and social impact. The approval came despite environmental concerns voiced by the local population and several NGOs claiming the project would pollute water supply.

World Maritime News Staff