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Kerala Maritime Board plans big-ticket projects to improve infrastructure

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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM : The Kerala Maritime Board (KMB) is planning to implement a slew of projects to improve the coastal infrastructure so that the state can reap the benefits of Vizhinjam Deepwater Sea Port, which is expected to be commissioned in May 2023.

The Prism Online Investors’ Meet was held on last Wednesday towards achieving this goal, said KSEB Former Chairman NS Pillai, who took over as the Chairman of Kerala Maritime Board.

As many as 120 investors from countries like the UAE, Qatar and Malaysia and NRI investors attended the meet, in which the port department announced a slew of projects the state plans to develop through public-private partnership or revenue-sharing model.

The projects include establishment of ship building and ship repair yards, dry docks, offshore wind energy projects, water sports and tourism projects. “The Kerala Maritime Board has got infrastructure facilities at Neendakara in Kollam, which can be utilised to start a maritime institute. The Kerala Maritime Academy can impart skill-based training. We are planning to explore the coastal and marine resources to tap the potential of blue economy,” said Pillai.

“There is a mechanical engineering workshop at Kollam port which we want to develop into a ship repairing yard. There is tremendous scope for a repairing yard catering to small ships. Another project is to establish a ship building yard at Poovar in Thiruvananthapuram. There is immense potential for the yard as the opening of Vizhinjam port will bring new opportunities. In Ponnani, there is potential for a floating terminal and cruise vessels can be operated from here,” said PT Joy, Private Secretary to Ports Minister Ahamed Devarkovil

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