Week ending July 1, 2001


News on Ports

Chennai Port Trust Management has signed agreement with all major port trust unions and RLC (Regional Labour Commissioner) on the working arrangements to be followed for the workers. After the handing over the port's container terminal to P&O Ports Australia.

The buying of barge unloaders stands still in Murmagao port owing to several reasons like frequent change in port chairman and influence in functioning of port by local mine owners and exporters. Of the 12 million tonnes of ore handled by the Mormugao port annually for export, barges transport the entire quantity from mines to the port. Earlier the port had planned to acquire four barge unloaders of 750 tonne capacity with many parties showing interest to the bid.

The total number of CFS in Tuticorin has risen to 7 with the opening of a second CFS by Sanco Trans Limited. This is located at Tuticorin - Palayam High Road 15 kms off the port and but it is the nearest CFS from the port. It would have a capacity to stock 500 containers in open space according to the MD Mr. V Upendran. This marks the completion of phase -1, i.e. the company has built a warehouse of 5000sqft. Costing Rs. 3 crores. In phase- ll it would upgrade and invest for reefer handling facilities. Currently it gives facilities like fully-fledged customs offices connection, survey repair facilities, consolidation of cargo and survey reports for all Export-Import containers, value adding activities like palletizing and packaging. They are mostly targeted to import containers and will be sent to Salem ,Comibatore ,Madurai, Bangalore after getting destuffed.

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News on Shippings

Diamond shipping company proposes to transfer its South-East Asian and Far Eastern operation to a JV company. It also has plans to revamp the operations of its Singapore based subsidiary DSC maritime.

According to a UK-based Ocean Shipping Consultants (OSC), "East Asia Container Port Market to 2015" Singapore's container throughput will drop sharply. This is in coherence with the PSA Corp figures that came out recently. But as per various sources this could be to an extent because of the Maersk pullout in the region.

Great Eastern Shipping is among the four other shipping parties who are in race for acquiring the drilling business of Essar Oil. Currently Essar owns 11 land rigs that are profit making ones employed in Gulf countries. Essar expects to raise Rs. 400 Cr. From the sale of this division.

ISO-9002 certification was awarded to Sagar Ratna an ONGC offshore rig from M/s Indian Register QS for QMS. Sagar Ratna has so for drilled 84 wells and more than 170,000m into the seafloor of the Indian coast.

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News on Shipyards

At Amsterdam the second schedule of global summit on "shipping recycling " will have ship-breaking yard at Alang as its central topic. This will promote the plus points of this largest ship breaking yard to the entire industry keeping in view the coming up of other newer yards in China, Bangladesh and Vietnam. Prof Niko Wijnolst who is representing Netherlands is expected to present the case of Alang to the shiprecycling world. Its worthwhile to note that safety concerns have been implemented in Alang to an extent, the accidents in Alang this year is reduced to 18 of which 16 have succumbed to death as compared to 60 accidents and 30 deaths in year 1999-2000 but it still has a long way to go.

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News on Logistics

Transport Corporation to go international for having presence in international operations TCIL, the country's largest logistic and transportation company has moulded out a separate division - XPS Cargo Services. XPS has tie ups with Skysea Freight international and Enim Omsin for operations in Dubai and Bangladesh respectively. It has an office in Kathmandu. According to MD Mr K Pravakar, ITCL currently plans to operate in Srilanka, Pakistan, China and Singapore.

The tea board, India tea Association (ITA), Eastern India Shipping Association (EISA) and Williamson Magor and Company are up against the Shipping lines to the 22% hike in terminal handling Charges (THS) on shipment of tea through the Amingaon (ICD) with retrospective effect from April 1,2001.

The Central Inland water Transport Corporation (CIWTC) Kolkata has been approved of Rs. 116.22 Cr package for reorganization by the central government. Of the net 116.22 Cr, Rs 76.36 Cr will be borne by the government and Rs. 39.67 Cr. will be will be refunded by CIWTC to the government on realization of assets. The government will write off previous loan and interest totalling to Rs. 485.86 Cr as on March 31st 2001.

At Cossipore in Kolkatta and Tughlakbad in Delhi the CONCOR has introduced time table and time bound fright train in Eastern Railway and Northern Railway for the ICDs. This will infact give CONCOR to charge a cost of Re 1 per kg as against Rs 12 per kg by local road transport company for minimum cargo trading of 10 kgs. The current services so far are in Howrah (Shalimar) and Chennai, Howrah (Shalimar) and Hyderabad, Howrah (Cossipore) and Haldia.

Of the lifespan of 100 years almost 50% of Indian rail bridges have outlived this period. There are about 120,000 bridges in the country and 51,000 of there are more than 100 years. The rail safety "Khanna Committee" has recommended rehabilitation of all bridges within 5 years. The recent collapse of the Kadalundi bridge in kerala was one such bridge. The railway ministry is trying to push for safety grants for railways through finance minister.

World bank grants $ 580 mn for GT road improvement project, which would fund the Delhi -Kolkata highway. This grant proceeds the $ 513 mn approved by World Bank in 2000. Of the total project cost of $ 756 mn, $167mn will be contributed by government and rest by IBRD

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