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American Shipper

Dubai Ports to build and operate $500 million Indian terminal

Dubai Ports to build and operate $500 million Indian terminal

   The Kochi Port Trust (KoPT) has awarded Dubai Ports International (DPI) a 38-year concession to construct, develop and exclusively operate a container transshipment terminal at Vallarpadam in India’s Cochin port. KoPT and DPI will share 33.33 percent of the new terminal’s revenue.

   The total cost of the project is estimated at $500 million and will be funded by DPI through non-recourse debt funding, provided by a consortium of banks led by the Infrastructure Development Fund Co., set up to provide growth capital for infrastructure projects in India.

   DPI said that once complete Vallarpadam will be the largest single operator container terminal in India. Construction is expected to be completed in four years and commercial operations to begin within a year of completion. The first phase of the new terminal will have a capacity of one million TEUs and cost approximately $135 million. It will comprise 600 meters (1,969 feet) of quay, six super post panamax quay cranes and an on-dock railhead serviced by rail-mounted gantry cranes.

   Vallarpadam will be expanded ahead of demand to a total of 1.8 kilometers (5,906 feet) of quay eventually with a minimum of 16 quay cranes and a capacity of three million TEUs.

   As part of the agreement, DPI has taken over the management and operation of the existing Rajiv Gandhi container terminal in Kochi Port prior to the transfer of its operations to the new terminal upon its completion. DPI said it will invest about $20 million to improve productivity at the Rajiv Gandhi terminal.

   “It is important for India to capitalize on its rapidly growing economy. It needs to ensure the provision of terminals that will facilitate direct calls of main line vessels and needs to reduce the overdependence on transshipment hubs located overseas,” said Mohammed Sharaf, managing director, DPI.