Adani Ports and
Special Economic Zone Ltd (APSEZ) has completed the acquisition of debt-laden
Dighi port for ₹650 crore under the bankruptcy law and after all regulatory
plan submitted by APSEZ also include settlement of unpaid dues of ₹11.38 crore
to the Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB), the Maharashtra government agency
tasked with developing and regulating ports in the western State.
With Dighi port, APSEZ in eight of nine Indian coastal states
acquisition of Dighi port, APSEZ has expanded its presence to eight of the nine
Indian coastal states. The only coastal state where it does not have a presence
is West Bengal.
biggest private port operator, paid an upfront amount of ₹ 650 crore to a
clutch of 16 banks led by Bank of India, a 78.7 per cent haircut to the ₹
3,056.96 crore that Dighi Port owes to these financial creditors, making it one
of the cheapest deals in the ports sector.
The liquidation value set by the valuers for Dighi Port was ₹ 356.30
price should, however, be seen from the context of Dighi’s present status with
the depth to handle only 40,000-tonne ships.
challenge in turning around the port is its lack of depth and back-up rail and
road connectivity to evacuate cargo.
promoter Gautam Adani has always aimed at running bigger ports, Dighi can be
turned around into a mid-sized port if it can get 8-10 mt of cargo such as
coal, liquids and steel with a cluster of warehouses and industries coming up
in the vicinity. For this, APSEZ may have to spend another ₹ 3,000 crore to dig
the port’s channel deeper and address road and rail connectivity
Dighi and JNPT in the same district
Dighi is located
in the same district as Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) – India’s biggest
Dighi marked the
first instance of a port being hauled to the National Company Law Tribunal
(NCLT), which was set up to oversee the bankruptcy law aimed at fixing the
country’s mounting bad bank loans.
Dighi Port was originally promoted by Balaji
Infra Projects Ltd and IL&FS Ltd