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AP Maritime Board and SBI-led consortium in Rs 1,500 Cr securitisation deal

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MUMBAI : Andhra Pradesh Maritime Board (APMB) has secured “in-principle” nod from a clutch of banks led by State Bank of India (SBI) to raise as much as Rs1,500 crore by securitising revenue from ports owned by the southern state in a first such securitisation deal involving a state-run agency in the port sector, top officials said.

APMB will utilise the 10-year long-term loan to fund equity component of three greenfield ports being developed by the state government.

The basic infrastructure of the three new ports being planned at Ramayapatnam, Bhavanapadu and Machilipatnam will be constructed through the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) mode using Government funds after which cargo handling facilities will be outsourced to private firms on long-term concessions.

APMB has also finalised debt funding of about Rs 2,000 crore from the SBI-led consortium to build the new port at Ramayapatnam on which the work is expected to start shortly, an official with the A P government said.

In July, a joint venture between Navayuga Engineering Co Ltd and Aurobindo Realty and Infrastructure Pvt Ltd signed a ₹2,634.65-crore engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract with the A P government for building a greenfield port at Ramayapatnam in the State’s Prakasam district.

Ramayapatnam Port will be developed in two phases with the first phase costing Rs3,736 crore to handle 24.91 million tonnes (mt) of cargo a year. In the second phase, the port’s cargo handling capacity will be expanded by 113.63 mt with an investment of Rs6,904 crore.

“APMB has arranged equity money for Ramayapatnam and Bhavanapadu ports as well as debt funding for Ramayaptanm port,” the official said.

APMB, the agency tasked with developing the maritime sector of Andhra Pradesh, receives revenue of Rs200-300 crore annually as revenue share from ports located at Krishnapatnam, Gangavaram and Kakinada, among others, that were awarded to private firms for development and operations.

The interest and repayment of the loan will be facilitated through an escrow account which will receive all the revenue accruing to APMB from the operational ports in the state.

The proceeds from the securitisation money will also be used to strengthen the existing port infrastructure in the state and to develop offshore areas connected to the port, the official added.

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