The Centre gave its ‘in-principle’ approval to set up the country’s 13th major port at Enayam, near Colachel in Tamil Nadu.
A special purpose vehicle (SPV) will be formed for the development of port that will act as a major gateway container port for cargo and become a trans-shipment hub for East-West trade route, according to a statement from the Shipping Ministry. The initial investment for the SPV will come from three major ports in Tamil Nadu — V. O. Chidambaranar Port Trust, Chennai Port Trust and Kamarajar Port Limited.
Currently, all of India's trans-shipment traffic gets handled in Colombo, Singapore and other international ports due to which the Indian port industry loses out around Rs.1,500 crore revenues each year, the government said.
The new port at Enayam will also reduce the logistics cost for exporters and importers in south India who currently depend on trans-shipment in Colombo or other ports leading to additional port handling charges, it said.
“The SPV will develop the port infrastructure including dredging and reclamation, construction of breakwater, ensuring connectivity links etc,” according to the statement.
India has 12 major ports at present — Kandla, Mumbai, JNPT, Marmugao, New Managlore, Cochin, Chennai, Ennore, V.O. Chidambarnar, Visakhapatnam, Paradip and Kolkata (including Haldia).