Union Minister of Ports, Shipping & Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal on Friday unveiled projects worth ₹231.21 crore at VO Chidambaranar Port in Thoothukudi.

During his visit to the port on Friday, the Minister laid the foundation stone for the Tuticorin SPEEDZ (Coastal Employment Unit) land for development of port-based Industries, spanning 1,300 acres worth ₹100 crore. He also laid the foundation stone for inner harbour development works (widening the port entrance and dredging the widened portion) at a total cost of ₹65.53 crore.

The Minister also inaugurated the upgraded coal yard road and drainage system at a cost of ₹16 crore and the Smart Port projects, India’s first indigenously developed Vessel Traffic System, at ₹2.29 crore.

The Minister also inaugurated Ease of Doing Business projects, including Drive through Container Scanner and 140 MT Electronic in-motion Weigh Bridge, at a total cost of ₹46.51 crore.

In his speech, the Minister said that “the inclusive Green Port initiatives taken by the VOC Port Authority will set standards across all major ports to increase the share of renewable energy to more than 60 per cent by 2030.

The minister also affirmed that the Government would take all efforts to transform VOC Port as the Transhipment hub of the East coast of India by developing the Outer Harbour Project.