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SMP, Kolkata to submit detailed project report of Great Nicobar transhipment project soon

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KOLKATA : The Syama Prasad Mookherjee Port (SMP), formerly known as Kolkata Port, is set to submit the detailed project report (DPR) for the ambitious International Container Transhipment Port (ICTP) at Galathea Bay in Great Nicobar shortly, a senior official said on Tuesday.

The tender for the construction of the first phase of the Rs 44,000 crore ICTP is likely to be announced in early 2024.

“The Great Nicobar project DPR is ready and will be submitted to the shipping ministry anytime soon,” SMP Chairman Mr. Rathendra Raman said on the sidelines of an interactive session with the members of the Bharat Chamber of Commerce.

According to officials, the report is expected to reach the ministry within the next 2-3 days.

However, the entity responsible for developing the port remains unclear, as SMP was only entrusted with preparing the DPR.

“We don’t have details. We were just asked to prepare the DPR by the government, and we have executed that,” Mr. Raman said.

Discussing port performance, Raman said that the SMP anticipates a 5 per cent growth in traffic for the current fiscal year 2023-24.

He said the port aims to conclude the year with 68 million tonnes of cargo traffic.

This growth is expected to be lower due to traffic regulations in Khidirpur Dock 1 and 2 for three months for renovation being carried out after 50 years.

In 2022-23, the Kolkata Dock System and Haldia Dock Complex achieved double-digit growth of 12.5 per cent over the previous fiscal year, handling 65.66 million tonnes of cargo.

Mr. Raman shared plans to create a Special Economic Zone (SEZ)-like development area in both Kolkata and Haldia, although details remain in the initial stages.

About 25 acres in Kolkata and 125 acres in Haldia are under consideration for development as SEZs.

The Kolkata port possesses approximately 4,500 acres in Kolkata and 6,500 acres in Haldia of excess land available for various infrastructure and development projects.

Additionally, Mr. Raman mentioned that, in response to the West Bengal government’s request for a tea park, a joint inspection has been conducted.

Three land parcels, totalling about 10 to 12 acres, have been identified to offer support to the state government.

“The tea park is expected to have all modern facilities for processing and packaging similar to those in Dubai”, Mr. Raman said.

Meanwhile, SMP is in the process of enhancing its installed capacity by 30 million tonnes by 2030 at a cost of Rs 5,000 crore.

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