Week ending December 9, 2001


News on Ports

Chennai Container Terminal Handed over to P&O Ports With the dismissal of the petition filed by the port workers, by the Madras High Court on November 30,2001, the Chennai Port Trust authority has handed over the container terminal to P&O Ports. Consequently, the new entity - The Chennai Container Terminal Ltd. (CCTL), a special purpose vehicle (CPV) created by P&O Ports has officially commenced its operations from the third shift of November 30. As per the agreement, minimum guaranteed productivity from 350,000 teus to 800,000 teus in three stages is assured and CCTL will take care of the entire container handling equipment at the port.

TAMP approves composite box rate at Vizag port The Tariff Authority For Major Ports (TAMP) has approved the proposal of the Visakhapatanam port authorities to fix a composite rate on the containers. The port, which until recently used to charge the shippers according to the cargo loaded on to the containers, had in its new proposal sought to make the handling of cargo through container boxes more remunerative by seeking approval for charging a fixed box rate of Rs. 425 on 20-foot containers and Rs. 638 on 40-foot containers. The new composite rate is expected to result in savings for exporters and importers using the port and help boost container traffic at the port.


The Mechanical Engineering Department of the Tuticorin Port Trust has invited sealed tenders from Indian suppliers for the manufacture and supply of 6.6 kv switch gear with vacuum Circuit breaker (No 5). The estimated value of supply is 17.40 crores, the earnest money deposit is 45,000 and value of tender document is Rs. 1500. The delivery period is two months. The last date for obtaining tender document Chief Mechanical Engineer is 27. 12.2001.

Bids are also invited from Indian suppliers for supply, errection, commissioning and testing of 22/6.6 KVA Power Transformer. The estimated value of supply is Rs.11 crores, the earnest money deposit is Rs.27, 000 and the value of the bid document is Rs.1500. The delivery of the supply is to be made within a period of two months. The last date for issue of tender document is 26.12.2001.

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News on Shippings

Great Eastern Shipping to issue Rs. 100 crore preference shares soon Great Eastern Shipping Co Ltd has convened an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of its shareholders on December 14 to seek their approval for issuing and allotting 10 crore redeemable preference shares of Rs 10 each aggregating to Rs. 100 crore. The proceeds of the issue is expected to be utilized for the long-term working capital requirements of the company. Company sources have been quoted as saying that the preference shares would be issued either by way of private placement or on a preferential basis or any combination thereof to resident and or non-residents including institutions, incorporated bodies individuals or otherwise. The exact details of the issue will be finalized after the EGM gives its approval for the issue.

SCI reverses its decision on taking up LNG deal liability The Shipping Corporation of India board has reportedly reversed its earlier decision to take on the liability arising out of the default in the repayment of loan for the $ 370 million LNG shipping deal for Petronet LNG Ltd. The board had earlier indicated its willingness to cover costs of the liability as contingent liability on its books. According to news reports, a joint and several liability estimated at $ 520 million may devolve on SCI, if a default occurs in the repayment of the outstanding loan amount in case the loan is not refinanced at the end of the initial loan period of 10 years. The board, while deciding to back out of its earlier stand, has explained that assuming such a liability might prove costly for SCI's own borrowing programme in future. The project involves LNG transportation from Qatar to Petronet's LNG terminal at Dahej in Gujarat, using SCI's tanker vessels.

Maersk Sealand to launch new direct service to US Mr. Tomas Dyrbye, Managing Director of Maersk Sealand has announced the introduction of a new weekly direct service to US. The inaugural sailing from Colombo and Nhava Sheva port will commence on December 14 and 17 respectively and reach Newark on January 7, 2002. The new service will be the fastest direct connection to key ports on the US east coast in addition to existing comprehensive coverage of US Gulf ports. Nhava Sheva to Newark voyage will take 21 days.

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News on Shipyards

Cochin Shipyard to build two big SCI tankers. The Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) has placed orders for two 115,000 DWT tankers with the Cochin Shipyard, country's biggest shipyard. Mr. P.K.Srivatasava, Chairman and Managing Director of SCI disclosed this at a press conference in Mumbai. The largest vessel built so far at Cochin Shipyard is 95,000 DWT and to build the newly ordered SCI mega-tankers, the shipyard will have to modify its facilities.


Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd., has invited pre-qualification bids from reputed firms cable of undertaking design, manufacture, supply, errection and commissioning of one 10-ton electric level luffing crane for finger jetty at GRSE/FOJ unit. Bids should reach General Manager (Materials), 43/46 Garden Reach Road, Kolkata 700024.

Hindustan Shipyard Limited has invited offers from experienced eligible contractors for executing the steel renewal works onboard the ships under repair in their yard at Visakhapatanam. The rate of the contract will be finalized basing on the offers received. Interested contractors can forward their requisitions to General Manager, Ship Repair Division, along with a demand draft for Rs.1, 000 drawn from a nationalized bank towards the cost of tender document drawn in favour of Hindustan Shipyard Limited, Visakhapatanam- 530005. The last date for receipt of requisition for tender document is 30 December 2001.

News on Logistics

Customs scrap mandatory six-month permission for factory stuffing The Central Board of Excise & Customs (CBEC) in a much-awaited decision have yielded to exporter's demand for scrapping the mandatory six-monthly permission required for factory stuffing. Till now such permission was for a six-month tenure basis and had to be renewed at the end of six months. Under the new system, the permission would be granted on a one-time basis and will be valid permanently unless revoked for any specific reason.

Balmer Lawrie seeks alliances for its box business The public sector conglomerate Balmer Lawrie has invited partnership bids from specialized companies for four of its strategic business units (SBUs), including its container freight business.

The Railways handle 41.48 MT freight in Oct 2001 The Indian Railways have handled 41.48 million tones(MT) of cargo freight during October 2001, which is more than 2.71 MT handled in the corresponding month of the previous year. Of this, 19.48 million tones was coal, 3.50 MT of cement, 2.65 MT of fertilizers and 2.97 MT of POL and 4.45 MT of other goods. The railways earned Rs. 2,118.50 crore from the freight traffic during the month.

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