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Chennai port to have a dedicated berth for bunkers

In an attempt to diversify sources of income Chennai port is setting up a dedicated bunker berth in order to tap the immense potential for bunker fuels in the East Coast Chairman of the port P Raveendran announced at a news conference last week.

It is proposed to construct a 181 meter long bunker berth at Bharathi Oil docks near the entrance of the port at an estimated cost of Rs 44 crores. The final clearance for the project was issued recently he said.

There has been demand that the Chennai port taking advantage of the calm seas outside the port should start supplying bunker fuel to ships to diversify its sources of income. Singapore port earns substantial revenue by providing bunker fuel to ships.

Both the container terminals of the port are geared to handle 8000 TEU capacity container vessels after the completion of capital dredging in Ambedkar docks and Jawahar dock basins. The alongside depth at the container terminals is now 15 meters after the completion of dredging.

Construction of coastal berth to handle one million tons of additional cargo at the northern sheltering arm with exclusive road leading to it will be commissioned in the next two months.

The existing cruise terminal has been upgraded and modernized to international standards through a grant from the tourism ministry as part of the cruise shipping policy. The spruced up terminal is ready to receive cruise vessels with all the facilities for the passengers. The first cruise vessel Viking sun with 845 tourists was handled at the terminal on April one.

Work on development of a Common railway yard has been completed and it can receive full length rakes. The port has installed an in motion rail weigh bridge to facilitate weighing of wagons by the users handling bulk cargo through rail. Chennai Port and CONCOR has started a new initiative of transporting direct port delivery of imports and direct port entry of export containers from  CONCOR yard at Tondiarpet about fifteen kilometers ahead of the port. Rail shuttle services will operate between the yard and the port to reduce road congestion.

The port is also poised to set up a Multi Modal Logistics Park at Jolarpet to handle containers from Coimbatore and Bengaluru. Containers from these areas aggregate at the Park, cleared by customs and other agencies and sent directly to the Chennai port by rail.

The trial service of coastal movement of containers between Chennai and Puducherry Ports commenced last month by the vessel MV Chowgule.  Full- fledged services between the two ports will commence shortly after the dredging work at Puducherry port is completed.

A Maritime Industrial cluster is coming up at Mappedu near the port which has potential for steel, petro chemicals, electronics and ship building industry

Despite sluggish growth in global trade, the cargo volume handled at the port was 51.88 million tons during the last financial year. The net surplus is expected to be about Rs 32 crores during 2017-18 compared to rs 13 crores previous year.


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