L&T to submit final report on KoPT’s 90 mt capacity augmentation plan soon

Shobha Roy Kolkata | Updated on September 20, 2019 Published on September 20, 2019

The Kolkata Port Trust (KoPT) is expecting L&T Consultancy to submit its final report relating to capacity augmentation of the port based on demand patterns and cargo movement projections in the next two months.

According to Vinit Kumar, Chairman, KoPT, the consultancy had submitted a draft report on developing a master plan recently.

“They submitted a draft report recently and based on that we have given our comments. We should have the final report within the next two months,” Kumar told BusinessLine on the sidelines of a session organised by the Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry here on Wednesday.

KoPT had roped in L&T Consultancy to develop a master plan so as to determine which sector will drive demand, and finalise augmentation plans. The port trust is planning a near 40 per cent capacity augmentation to be able to handle 90 million tonnes (mt) of cargo annually across the Haldia and Kolkata docks. The increase is expected over the next four-five years.

While the Haldia port will see a near 45 per cent increase in capacity to 65 mt, up from the existing 45 mt it handles annually, the Kolkata dock will see a 47 per cent capacity rise to 25 mt from 17 mt of cargo, annually.

Based on the draft report submitted by the consultancy, the target (of ramping up capacity) “looks achievable”, he said.

KoPT, which created a record by handling 63.7 mt of cargo traffic in 2018-19, almost 10 per cent higher as compared to 57.9 mt in 2017-18, is expecting to grow by 10 per cent this year.

“We have grown at over 6.5 per cent since the beginning of this fiscal till August. Our busy season starts in October. We hope to be able to grow by 10 per cent,” he said.

According to Kumar, the rise in trade activity led to increased volume of traffic handled by the ports in the eastern region and the trend is likely to continue.

While the volume of traffic handled by the eastern ports grew by about 15 per cent, the same for western ports grew by about 7 per cent.

“The western ports may have a high base but the eastern ports are catching up fast,” he said.

Published on September 20, 2019
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