Tuticorin port to be expanded at a cost of Rs 538 cr: Cabinet

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New Delhi, Jun 5 (UNI) Tuticorin Port would be equipped to handle mainline fourth generation container vessels of 56,000 DWT with 12.80 m draught with the Centre today giving aproval for deepening the channel and basin at a cost of Rs 538 crore.

Channel deepening would include dredging the channel to a depth of up to minus 14.70 m below chart datum and to a width of 230 m and to a length of 3.4 km from the port entrance, Information and Broadcasting Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi told reporters.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The approval also includes dredging a part of the existing harbour basin area, including the turning circle to a depth up to minum 14.1 m below Chart Datum.

Of the Rs 538 crore, Rs 349.70 crore (65 per cent) would be borne by the Tuticorin Port Trust, either from its internal resources and/or borrowings, and Rs 188.3 crore (35 per cent) would be given by the Centre as grant.

The port would be able to handle container vessels of 3,000-4,000 TEUs with LOA of 290 m and beam of 32.5 m. Bulk carriers upto 75,000 DWT with maximum draught of 12.8 m could also be handled. The project would reduce the sea freight for bulk cargo and boost the export-import trade to save time and transhipment cost of vessels.

UNI SN SBC HT1409

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