KOLKATA (ICIS)--Kolkata Port Trust (KoPT) will spend around $2.7bn (€2.21bn) by 2017 to expand its cargo handling capacity, which includes captive barge jetties, by 100m tonnes/year to cater to chemicals and petrochemical industries located at the port town of Haldia, a port official said on Tuesday.
KoPT currently has a cargo handling capacity of 35 million tonnes/year, and operates two riverine ports at Kolkata and Haldia in the eastern Indian province of West Bengal.
Port authorities will soon issue an Expression of Interest (EoI) for investors to build private captive jetties that will provide logistical support to chemical industries in Haldia.
These include an Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) refinery, a naphtha cracker belonging to Haldia Petrochemicals Limited (HPL), and a purified terephthalic acid (PTA) plant owned by Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC).
"Several chemicals and petrochemical companies have approached us seeking dedicated captive jetties. Once the jetties are constructed, the import dependant chemical and petrochemical plants at Haldia will be able to plan their cargo movements, reduce ship detention and reduce handling costs," the KoPT official said.
According to data provided by KoPT, the Haldia Dock Complex handled 4,415,000 million tonnes of petroleum and 2,160,000 tonnes of crude oil between 2011 and 2012.
KoPT will also explore options of providing logistical support to the $546m LNG (liquefied natural gas) terminal that the Hiranandani Group has proposed to construct at Haldia.
According to a statement issued by the Hiranandani Group, the feasibility report for the 4m tonne/year LNG terminal is ready and clearance from the central government of India is expected within the next six months. Construction work is expected to commence in nine months' time.
Government-owned GAIL India has also announced intentions to construct a LNG terminal in Haldia but details of the project and its capacity have not been disclosed.
The port town of Haldia will see investments amounting to around $9bn over the next five to seven years, the bulk of which will relate to chemicals, petrochemicals and refining industries.
These developments will create large opportunities for logistics and infrastructure and KoPT's ongoing investments were geared towards this, the port official said.
MCC PTA India Corporation operates an 800,000 tonne/year PTA plant which uses imported paraxylene (PX) obtained through a 13km-long pipeline connecting the plant to the Haldia Port.
HPL operates a naphtha cracker which has the capacity to produce 700,000 tonnes/year of ethylene using 80% imported naphtha.
($1 = €0.81)
Copyright 2012 Reed Business Information Limited. All Rights Reserved.
(Originally published July 17, 2012, in Chemical News & Intelligence.)