KoPT port plans Rs.1,650-cr expansion

    KoPT port plans
    In its quest to take on the Dhamra Port off the coast of Orissa aggressively, the Kolkata and Haldia ports have chalked out an ambitious expansion plan entailing a staggering investment of Rs.1,650 crore. As a matter of fact, Dhamra Port poses a threat of shifting container cargo from the twin ports under KoPT, while its Haldia arm is betting high on the trans-loading facility it has installed for handling bulk cargo. The berths that are being constructed outside the lock gates will reduce waiting time for the ships, thus, saving on the demurrage charges the shippers have to bear. Since Haldia is a river port, ships have to wait for up to two and a half days for tidal flow to leave the port, although unloading is completed within a day and a half. In fact, berths outside the port will reduce this compulsory waiting, chairman of both KoPT and Visakhapatnam Port Trust, M T Krishna Babu said, explaining that the Kolkata port witnessed a 9.8% year-on-year increase in container handling while for Haldia, it was 58.76% and the overall cargo in Haldia increased only 1.93% y-o-y since handling of POL (petroleum, oil and lubricants) dipped 13.67% and coking coal by 6.5%, he claimed.
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