Visakhapatnam Port Trust (VPT) has approved issuing a letter of award to Visakha Container Terminal Pvt. Ltd. (VCTPL) for extension of existing container terminal at a cost of Rs.633 crore.

The proposal was okayed by the board of trustees, which met here on Friday. Kolkata Port Trust Chairman R. P. S. Kahlon, who is holding additional charge as Chairman of VPT, presided over the meeting.

VCTPL, a joint venture of DP World and United Liners Agencies of India (Private) Ltd., had developed the existing container terminal a decade ago under the PPP (Public-Private Partnership) model. It had handled 2.47 lakh twenty-foot equivalent units in the last fiscal. Once the new container terminal is extended, it will increase the capacity by 0.5 million TEU. It is envisaged to increase the length of the all-weather terminal to 850 metres to handle bigger size vessels.

The letter of award is likely to be issued on Monday, VPT sources told The Hindu.

VPT accepted the VCTPL’s revised offer of 11.44 per cent of gross revenue share from the new project for which the concession agreement for 30 years will be signed in the New Year. The project will be taken up under develop, build, fund, operate and transfer (DBFOT) model.

The tender committee set up by VPT under the chairmanship of Chief Engineer Ramachandra Rao opened the price bid on November 18. VCTPL had emerged as the only qualified bidder to submit price bid. VCTPL, which was also the single largest bidder earlier, was not considered by the port for offering just 10 per cent of gross revenue share.

The board subsequently asked all the seven qualified bidders, including VCTPL, Adani, Simplex, Welspun and Leighton, to submit fresh bids.

“We are delighted at the Friday’s decision to issue letter of award in our favour. It will help VPT in facing competition thrown up in handling container cargo by the Krishnapatnam and Dhamra Ports,” CEO of VCTPL Capt. Sriram Ravi Chander said.

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