Thursday, July 25, 2024

L&T Secures Rs 554 Crore Contract for Paradip Port’s South Breakwater Extension

Larsen & Toubro Ltd, India’s leading engineering and construction firm, is set to win a Rs 554 crore contract from the state-owned Paradip Port Authority in Odisha. The contract involves extending the port’s south breakwater by 500 meters, aligning with the port’s strategy to accommodate fully loaded Capesize ships.

L&T’s bid, 9 percent above the estimated cost of Rs 508.52 crore by the port authority, emerged as the lowest among competing bidders, including Afcons Infrastructure Ltd, according to undisclosed sources. The Paradip Port Authority’s board is expected to approve L&T’s bid in an upcoming meeting this week, as stated by an official from the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways.

Paradip Port, a major state-run port in India, has been handling substantial cargo, with 119.851 million tonnes between April and January this fiscal year. It is on track to surpass Deendayal Port in Gujarat. The extension of the south breakwater is crucial for accommodating larger Capesize ships, allowing Paradip to deepen its draft and enhance its capabilities.

Currently, the port handles Capesize ships with a draft restriction of 16 meters. The planned extension aims to facilitate the comfortable handling of Capesize ships, ensuring compatibility with draft requirements. The project is part of the port’s initiative to deepen its infrastructure, supporting the docking of mainline container ships and Capesize vessels.

The extension project is also linked to the contractual obligations of the port authority to provide necessary infrastructure for Jindal Steel & Power Ltd (JSPL). JSPL is constructing a 25-million-tonne capacity deep-draft dry bulk cargo handling terminal at the port’s Western Dock. The overall project involves a significant investment, including dredging to deepen the approach and entrance channels.

This initiative is expected to decongest the port, reduce ocean freight costs through the use of Capesize ships, make coal imports more cost-effective, and stimulate the industrial economy in the port’s hinterland. The extension of the south breakwater is a crucial step in ensuring the port’s compliance with handling fully loaded Capesize ships and supporting the broader goals of enhancing maritime infrastructure.

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