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Dhamra Port Co's mega expansion to go under Odisha govt's scrutiny

Jayajit Dash/Bhubaneswar 14 Mar 18 | 04:33 PM


A massive expansion proposed by Adani Group controlled Dhamra Port Company Ltd (DPCL) would go under scrutiny of the Odisha government.

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DPCL, a subsidiary of Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone (APSEZ), has recast its master plan. According to the revised plan, the port's cargo handling capacity is envisaged at 314 million tonnes with 35 operative berths. The draft of the deep water port along the coast of north Odisha is proposed to be scaled to 22 metres, making it the deepest port in the country.

“We have decided to study the repercussions of the mega expansion proposed by Dhamra port authorities. The state government would soon enter into agreement with the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO), Goa to examine the overall impact of the port expansion", an official source said.

The original master plan submitted by DPCL had pegged the total capacity at 100 million tonnes. Dhamra port currently operates two berths with a combined capacity to handle 25 million tonnes. The port handled 17.81 million tonnes cargo in 2016-17. In FY18, the port has handled 17.66 million tonnes at the end of January.

Dhamra port kicked off commercial operations in May 2011. Since its operations, the port has contributed Rs 2.81 billion revenue to the state government as per the terms of the concession agreement.

The port is also gearing up to have an LNG terminal. Adani Enterprises has entered into an agreement with Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) and GAIL (India) Ltd for the terminal, estimated to cost Rs 60 billion. The proposed LNG terminal would have a re-gasification capacity of five mtpa. It would be the sixth LNG terminal on the east coast and feed Indian Oil’s refineries at Paradip, Haldia and Barauni apart from offering feedstock to some fertiliser units.

Separately, DPCL has asked for 2000 acres of land from the Odisha government to develop an industrial park. The company has volunteered to be the anchor tenant for this park.

The park would help attract investments in port-based, agro-based and food processing industries", said a source close to the development.

It may be noted that the Odisha government had earlier announced its plan to develop a Special Investment Region (SIR) around Dhamra over 7500 acres of land. But, acquiring such a large patch of contiguous land was not feasible. The cost of developing infrastructure for the proposed zone was pegged at Rs 3,100 crore. Of this, the Government of India is set to contribute Rs 1,844 crore while the balance Rs 1,256 crore will be borne by the state government. Dhamra is identified as one of the three key manufacturing hubs by the state industries department along with Kalinganagar and Paradeep.

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