IWAI floats fresh tenders for privatising multi-modal terminals at Varanasi, Sahibganj

P Manoj Mumbai | Updated on June 30, 2021

The three multi-modal terminals were built on the 1,390-km long Varanasi to Haldia stretch along river Ganga (file photo)   -  PTI

Earlier, tenders for the projects scrapped due to single bids

India’s waterways development agency has re-invited bids for privatising the multi modal river terminals at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and Sahibganj in Jharkhand after scrapping earlier tenders that received single bids.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ) was the lone bidder for the Varanasi multi modal terminal while Hindustan Infralog Pvt Ltd, a joint venture between Dubai-government owned D P World Ltd and India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Ltd (NIIF) was the single bidder for the Sahibganj terminal, in the earlier round of bidding.

“The tenders were scrapped because the projects attracted single bids. As per the Central Vigilance Commission guidelines, single bids cannot be accepted,” a government source briefed on the matter said.

The multi-modal river terminal at Varanasi is a prestigious project for the government as it falls under the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The multi-modal terminals at Varanasi, Sahibganj and Haldia were built by the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) as part of the Jal Marg Vikas Project (JVMP), the 1,390-km long Varanasi to Haldia stretch along river Ganga, with a $375 million loan from the World Bank.

Global tender

IWAI floated a fresh global tender for the Varanasi terminal on June 28. Potential bidders have time until July 25 to file their qualification documents.

The global tender for the Sahibganj terminal was issued on Wednesday with August 14 as the deadline for submission of initial bids.

The government has retained the tender terms in the fresh round of bidding without any changes.

This is the third attempt by IWAI to privatise the two terminals.

The multi modal terminals at Varanasi and at Haldia are being privatised on the Equip, Operate and Transfer (EOT) model. The Varanasi contract will have a tenure of 10 years which can be extended by two years.

IWAI had sought bids for the Sahibganj terminal on a operate, manage and develop (OMD) model for a concession period of 30 years.

The successful bidder will also undertake operation and management (O&M) of the proposed Ro-Ro terminal at Sahibganj.

The contracts will be awarded to the entity quoting the highest royalty per metric ton of riverine cargo handled at each of these terminals to IWAI.

Additionally, for non-riverine cargo handled at the terminals, the private operator will have to pay royalty calculated on the royalty quoted for riverine cargo plus a premium of 20 per cent.

Riverine cargo refers to cargo transported to and/or from the terminal through waterways. Non-riverine cargo are those other than riverine cargo.

The IWAI has set cargo and vessel related charges at these terminals.

IWAI has received four bids for the privatisation of the multi-modal terminal at Haldia. The bids submitted by APSEZ, Hindustan Infralog Pvt Ltd, Orissa Stevedores Ltd and IRC Natural Resource Pvt Ltd are currently undergoing security clearance by the government, a mandatory process for maritime projects, the government source said.

The Haldia contract will have a concession period of 10 years which can be extended by five years.

Published on June 30, 2021

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