Logistics

Hopes run high at New Mangalore port as ban goes on iron ore exports

A.J. Vinayak Mangalore | Updated on April 06, 2011 Published on April 06, 2011

Awaiting signal: Loading iron ore fines on to the ship at the New Mangalore Post Trust

Tuesday's Supreme Court order lifting Karnataka's ban on export of iron ore has infused a new hope of life among the users of the New Mangalore port here.

The port users feel that the existing infrastructure to handle the cargo and system to check the illegal export would come in handy in future also.

The New Mangalore Port Trust (NMPT), which handled 5.4 million tonnes of iron ore fines in 2009-10, was able to handle only 0.9 million tonnes during 2010-11. The main reason for this was the ban on the movement of iron ore by the Karnataka Government on July 26, 2010.

Optimism

Expressing optimism over the handling of iron ore at the New Mangalore port, Mr Shekhar Pujari, President of the Association of New Mangalore Port Stevedores, told Business Line that the apex court order will bring a new life into the activities of the port. “There will be old spirit of handling more cargo,” he said. Stating that the port has got good system for scrutinising documents before the cargo entered the port, he said: “As users, we take care of all these aspects. The cargo cannot enter the port without permit.”

Infrastructure

The infrastructure facilities to handle iron ore cargo remain unused now, and that can be better utilised once the iron ore handling begins at the port, he said.

Mr Mohammed Ameen, Honorary Secretary of the Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), said that the order should prove fruitful for everybody, including the port.

Many exporters had done good business before the ban was imposed on the export of iron ore. Those exporters are now waiting to move the cargo. The Supreme court order could help them, he said.

New hope to labourers

Mr Praveen Kumar Bangera, President of the Mangalore Steamer Agents' Association, said that genuine exporters may stand to benefit from this order. He said that the ban had affected the labourers very much, and many people involved in iron ore handling had lost their jobs. This order may bring a new hope among them, he said.

Welcoming the court order, Mr Dinesh Achar, General Secretary of the Karnataka Dock and General Workers' Union, said that the traffic came down at the port during 2010-11 because of shortfall in iron ore handling.

The trucks that used to bring iron ore were taking coal back to the hinterland. The ban affected that traffic also, he said.

When contacted, Mr P. Tamilvanan, Chairman of NMPT, said that he is yet to get a copy of the order. However, he said that the port has all the facilities to handle the cargo.

The cargo, which was stopped, will be coming again, he said, adding: “We are prepared for handling it.”

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Published on April 06, 2011
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