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Water transport workers'' federation opposes Vizhinjam project

Our Bureau Kochi | Updated on January 24, 2018 Published on June 04, 2015

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM-KERALA--31/12/2013: Fishing harbour at Vizhinjam in Thiruvananthapuram....Photo: C. Ratheesh Kumar

Water Transport Workers Federation of India has come out against the proposed Vizhinjam Port project, saying it will affect the prospects of Kochi Port.

The Federation secretary, T. Narendra Rao, countered the claims made by the Kerala Government that the Vizhinjam project would not affect either Kochi or Vallarpadam terminal.

Both Vizhinjam and Vallarpadam will vie for each other targeting the same transhipment and domestic cargo. This will ultimately benefit Colombo Port, the major competitor for transhipment cargoes from the Indian sub continent, he said.

Moreover, the transhipment business is fast losing its prominence as most of the major ports have already started striking deals with leading shipping lines for direct calls for cargo movement, he said.

For Vizhinjam, Rao said there is no minimum guaranteed throughput stipulated in the terms and conditions of the license agreement. The MGT clause makes an operator of the project mandatory to attract cargo. The State Government will not generate any revenue share from the Vizhinjam project for 15 years before getting even ₹1 crore from the 16th year onwards.

Besides, the State Government has to reimburse ₹1,210 crore to the bidder for setting up breakwater, capital dredging, road and rail connectivity etc, he said.

The main thrust given to the bidder by the state government is to develop Vizhinjam Port as a ‘real estate port rather than a major container hub port’, as 30 per cent of the land has been earmarked for real estate business, he alleged.

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Published on June 04, 2015
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