Companies

Essar Ports to up capacity utilisation at its terminals

Mamuni Das New Delhi | Updated on April 10, 2018 Published on April 10, 2018

Starts construction in Mozambique

Essar Ports is looking to increase its capacity utilisation at Hazira, Paradip and Visakhapatnam ports, and at Salaya in Gujarat, a new port it commissioned in December. It will also begin construction of a facility in Mozambique this year.

Essar aims to attain a total capacity of around 110 million tonnes (mt) this year.

The company’s project at Salaya port, with 20 mt capacity, has been completed. It will handle coal, coke, limestone, bauxite and is also looking to have a liquid cargo handling jetty.

“The company expects to handle 8-10 mt of cargo at the facility over the next year,” Rajiv Agarwal, CEO and MD, Essar Ports, told BusinessLine here.

Capacity utilisation

At the Visakhapatnam Port, which has a capacity of 24 mt, Essar Vizag Terminal Ltd handled 10 mt of cargo last year, utilising less than half the installed capacity. It aims to handle 12-13 mt of cargo this year, increasing its capacity utilisation by 20-30 per cent.

At this facility, the firm has customers such as NMDC, Essar Steel and JSW. At the terminal, about half of the total cargo handled is contributed by Essar Steel and the rest by NMDC and JSW.

At Hazira, the company has a maximum capacity utilisation of almost 80 per cent at present — it handled 23 mt cargo, while the total cargo handling capacity of the port stands at 30 mt annually.

By March 2019, it expects to increase the capacity utilisation to 29-30 mt, while raising the total capacity to 50 mt.

The facility handles coal, iron ore, finished steel and slag, which is a byproduct of steel plants and works as an input for cement plants.

At Paradip Port Trust, Essar has a terminal with a yearly capacity of 16 mt, where it handled 4.5 mt of cargo last year. The port expects to increase its capacity utilisation by handling 6.5 mt.

Mozambique plans

In Mozambique, Essar Ports will start construction on a port this year.

The country has rich coking and thermal coal reserves, from where it aims to move coking coal to destinations in South Africa, India, China and possibly Japan.

Interestingly, the parent company, conglomerate Essar Group, had moved to Mozambique when it was looking to acquire steel plants in neighbouring Zimbabwe, a land-locked country. Accordingly, it planned to set up infrastructure in Mozambique, in the form of a port.

Published on April 10, 2018
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