Singapore-based Bengal Tiger Line (BTL) has commenced feeder service from Krishnapatnam port, located about 180 km north of Chennai. The vessel, Cape Magnus, carrying more than 2,500 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units), made the first call at the port on Thursday and is scheduled to leave on Friday. The port rotation will be Singapore-Port Kelang-Chennai-Krishnapatnam-Port Kelang-Singapore.
Speaking to Business Line, A. Yendluri, CEO, Krishnapatnam port, pointed out that the world’s largest container operator, Maersk’s mainline vessels, had already made several calls to the port but on trial basis. “We do not know yet if Maersk will offer regular mainline services from the port. But with BTL vessel calling, we are confident of regular feeder services out of the port,” he observed.
Krishnapatnam port started handling container traffic a little less than a year ago with a 650-metre long quay. It recently took delivery of five super post Panamax gantries. The port’s container handling capacity is estimated at more than one million TEUs annually.
Mr Yendluri informed that the port recently handled 50,000 tonnes of iron ore import. “We’re perhaps the second port in the country, after Paradip, to handle iron ore import,” he said, pointing out that the importer was a trading firm. He had no information yet if the firm would import more ore.
Our Mumbai bureau adds: Krishnapatnam Port’s new 1.2-million TEU container terminal, built at a cost of about Rs 5,500 crore, started full-fledged operations on Thursday. “This is the first phase of the project,” Anil Yendluri, CEO, Krishnapatnam Port said. In the second phase the company will invest about Rs 11,000 crore and increase the capacity by another 4.8 million TEUs, he added.