Three projects worth Rs. 1800 cr. to be finalised in a few days

Efforts to make Visakhapatnam Port into a landlord port will get a shot in the arm with the finalisation of bids for three prestigious projects worth over Rs.1800 crore in next few days.

The price bids for extension of container terminal involving an investment of Rs.633 crore were opened on Wednesday. The price bids for mechanisation and upgradation of existing facilities at Ore Handling Complex (OHC) and West Quay North (WQ-7 and 8 berths) are slated for opening on Thursday.

The OHC and WQ North projects will respectively involve an investment of Rs.845 crore and Rs.393 crore as per the revised estimates. The cargo mix for WQ North berths will be for handling bulk cargo like bauxite, gypsum, blast furnace slag, manganese and other categories of ore.

“The price bids’ finalisation will be based on revenue sharing offered to us subject to approval by the committee of experts set up by Visakhapatnam Port Trust (VPT) and the board of trustees,” a senior VPT official told The Hindu on Wednesday.

The OHC project has to get final nod from the Union Cabinet.

Landlord ports

All these projects, as part of the Ministry of Shipping’s decision to convert all major ports into landlord ports, will be taken up under Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer (DBFOT) basis.

Sources said OHC mechanisation was initially planned by VPT on its own to increase handling of iron ore by taking loan from Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC).

This was dropped due to some technical problems and government’s policy on landlord ports.

However, part of the originally proposed loan will be availed from JBIC to fund dredging.

OHC was installed in the port in 1965 and it was modified in 1976 to handle one lakh DWT ore carriers. The complex has a 4.8 km-long one-way conveyer system along with bucket wheel reclaimer and ship loader to handle 8,000 tonnes per hour.

As part of its corporate plan, VPT will be spending Rs.13,940 crore with Rs.7,100 crore on PPP mode to handle 149 million tonnes by 2019-20.

  • Projects to be taken up on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer basis

  • Price bids’ finalisation will be based on revenue sharing, says official