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60% of Vizhinjam port project completed, supply of stones resolved: Minister

First ship to call at port on trial basis in September or October, says Devarkovil

January 24, 2023 07:21 pm | Updated January 26, 2023 10:15 am IST - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM

The monthly review meeting of the Vizhinjam International Seaport construction chaired by Ports Minister Ahammad Devarkovil here on Tuesday assessed the progress of the work and addressed issues related to supply of stones for the construction.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr. Devarkovil said the first ship will call at the under-construction port on a trial basis either in September or October. However, it will take one more year for the port to be equipped for full-fledged operations, he added.

So far, 60% of the project has been completed and the State government has given permission for opening seven more quarries to address the shortage of stones. There would not be any shortage of stones then. The issues related to trucks transporting stones for the port construction have also been resolved, said Mr. Devarkovil.

The construction is being conducted round the clock to make up for the days lost due to the strike by fishermen. At present, 2,055 m of breakwater construction has been partially completed. A 400-m berth will be completed first to bring the first ship to the port by September on a trial basis, said the Minister.

The company entrusted with the works will bring four large cranes to the site by May for cargo movement. The inauguration of the electric substation will be done by February-end, while the gate complex will be inaugurated in March by including the works in the action plan conceived as part of the first hundred days of the government’s second anniversary, said Mr. Devarkovil, adding that the construction of a new load operating point has begun to accelerate breakwater construction.

The Minister said the additional skill acquisition programme (ASAP) will soon begin its training modules at Vizhinjam to technically equip local residents for port-related employment opportunities.

K. Biju, Port department secretary, Gopalakrishnan, managing director of Vizhinjam International Seaport Limited (VISL), and others took part in the meeting.

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