The mega container terminal project contract in Chennai port will be awarded by July-end, according to the Shipping Secretary, Mr P.K. Sinha. The Rs 3,686-crore project will be the highest valued private-public-partnership project to be awarded this year and will create an annual additional capacity of four million 20- foot containers at the port. Adani Ports and Essar Ports are vying for the project. Both companies are awaiting security clearance from the Centre, as they had changed names (Adani Ports was formerly Mundra Port while Essar separated its shipping and ports businesses). For the proposed ‘build, own and transfer' project, the cost of dredging, floating crafts and navigational aids — estimated at Rs 561 crore — will be borne by the port trust.
The private operator will invest on berth and breakwater construction, reclamation of back-up area, handling equipment and other infrastructure at a cost of Rs 3,125 crore. The terminal is to be developed north of the existing Bharathi Dock. It will have two new breakwaters ( 4.5 km), and a continuous quay length of 2 km, which will have 22-metre alongside depth to handle ultra-large container ships of 15,000 20-ft equivalent unit capacity and 400 m long.