A joint venture led by Hyderabad-based Vishwa Samudra Holdings Pvt Ltd has won a ₹2,949.70 crore EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) contract from the Andhra Pradesh government for a new port at Bhavanapadu in Srikakulam district.

“We have issued a letter of intent to Vishwa Samudra Holdings for the EPC contract for Bhavanapadu port project,” said K Muralidharan, Chief Executive Officer, AP Maritime Board, the agency tasked with developing ports in the state.

Visakhapatnam-based R R Constructions Pvt Ltd is a partner in the joint venture that pipped Megha Engineering & Infrastructure Ltd (MEIL) to win the EPC deal for Bhavanapadu port.

The Andhra Pradesh government plans to build all-weather, deep water, multi-purpose port, costing ₹3,670 crore at Bhavanapadu.

Vishwa Samudra Holdings is promoted by Chinta Sasidhar, a former managing director of Krishnapatnam Port Co Ltd and the youngest son of Chinta Visweswara Rao, the founder of Navayuga Engineering Co Ltd, the flagship company of the CVR Group.

In April 2021, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ) bought the 25 per cent stake held by Vishwa Samudra Holdings in Krishnapatnam Port Co Ltd for ₹2,800 crore to add to the 75% it acquired in the port operating company from the Navayuga Group in October 2020.

Bhavanapadu is one of the four new ports identified by the State government to expand the port capacity to 400 million tonnes (mt) by 2024 from 110 mt.

Ramayapatnam port

In July 2021, the A P Maritime Board awarded the EPC contract for a new port at Ramayapatnam in Prakasam district to a joint venture between Hyderabad-based Aurobindo Realty and Infrastructure Pvt Ltd and Navayuga Engineering Co Ltd, for ₹2,634.65-crore.

The A P Maritime Board has received environment and coastal regulation zone clearances from the Centre a few days ago to start construction work on the Ramayapatnam port.

The Ramayapatnam port will be developed in two phases, with phase I costing ₹3,736 crore having a capacity to handle 24.91 million tonnes (mt) of cargo a year. In phase 2, the cargo handling capacity will be expanded by 113.63 mt with an investment of Rs6,904 crore to take the total capacity to 138.54 mt a year from 19 berths.

After the EPC work is completed, the AP government plans to bid out cargo handling operations at Ramayapatnam, Bhavanapadu and Machilipatnam ports to specialists in the field.

The A P Maritime Board has applied to the Centre seeking environment and CRZ clearances for the Bhavanapadu port project.