Saturday, June 7, 2008
Kakinada, June 3 The State Government, which promised at the time of the construction of the new deepwater port that the old port and those dependent on it would be protected, is grossly neglecting the anchorage port and encouraging the new one, the Kakinada Barge Owners’ Welfare Association has alleged.
At a press meet here on Tuesday, Dr B. Ramamurthy, President of the association, said that more than 10,000 workers were dependent on the old port directly or indirectly and therefore due importance should be given to the infrastructure at the port. Instead of allocating enough funds for the purpose and improving facilities at the anchorage, he alleged that the State was imposing unreasonable restrictions.
Recently, he said, 11 out of the existing 26 jetties were denotified by the customs authorities on security grounds and as a result cargo-handling at the anchorage was badly affected. He said the C&F (carrying and forwarding) agents were using the barges as storage godowns by delaying the discharge of cargo like urea, causing congestion at jetties. The port authorities were therefore restricting the number of ships being handled at the anchorage.
The barge owners had agreed to increase the tonnage up to 600 tonnes a barge from the present 350, but the State was not agreeable to it.
|IFC examining feasibility of various coastal roads|
KAKINADA: The Petroleum, Chemical and Petrochemical Investment Region (PCPIR) project proposed to be developed between Visakhapatnam and Kakinada, is gaining momentum with the feasibility of various coastal roads being examined by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).Mammoth venture
The IFC, which was recently appointed advisor of Infrastructure Corporation of Andhra Pradesh (INCAP) for the specific purpose of forging public-private partnerships for the project, is working out modalities of developing a combination of new and existing roads and connecting radial roads in the hinterland as a start-up to the State Government’s mammoth venture.
Prominent among the proposals is the road that links the seaports at Kakinada and Gangavaram in Visakhapatnam district (distance 138 km). It will be a six-lane road between Gangavaram port and Kakinada, which was originally estimated to cost Rs 1,937 crore.
A vast chunk of the expenditure is proposed to be borne by the Union Government in two phases.
Other PCPIR roads are: upgrading of State highways- No. 39 (Visakhapatnam - Anantagiri - Araku), No. 40 Kakinada - Rajahmundry via Samalkot, Bikkavolu, Anaparthi and Kadiam and No. 97 Yelamanchili - Gajuwaka, NH-214 [(Kathipudi - Razole - Kakinada - Narasapur - Pamarru (Krishna district)] and NH-214A [Digamarru (West Godavari district) - Narasapur - Machilipatnam - Challapalli - Avanigadda - Repalle - Bapatla - Chirala - Ongole].
Expanding the ADB Road (Kakinada port - NH-5) to four lanes and developing Kakinada bypass road are the other important components of the coastal road network which is an integral part of the PCPIR.
M/s Reliance Industries is in advanced stages of laying a link road in the PPP mode from Tallarevu to Gadimoga village, about 30 km from Kakinada, where it is constructing an on-shore terminal to receive gas extracted from the K-G basin.
The Vizag-Kakinada PCPIR is proposed to be developed in 250 sq. km (approximately 62,000 acres), comprising manufacturing facilities for the petrochemical industries, other logistical infrastructure and administrative and residential areas.
The PCPIR project also includes upgrading of Visakhapatnam and Rajahmundry airports, Visakhapatnam port and Kakinada deep water port, ‘logistic hubs’ containing inland container depots, container freight stations and warehouses, captive power plants and water supply schemes.
Another major component of PCPIR is the proposed refinery of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited having a revised capacity of 15 mtpa and costing nearly Rs 25,000 crore. This project is still in the conceptual stage.
Hyderabad, May 29 The Union Government has agreed to support the Coastal Corridor project covering the districts of Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam and East Godavari District in the State.
“Officials from the Union Government were keen to know about the proposed Coastal Corridor such as the basic infrastructure, industries that are likely to come up in the region and connectivity issues and after our presentation, they gave an in-principle approval to the project,” Mr B Sam Bob, Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce Department, Government of Andhra Pradesh, told Business Line. According to him, the Government will now look to develop a four or six-lane road parallel to the existing National Highway to support the port-based industries.
According to the initial plan, the Andhra Pradesh Government is looking at developing the 30-km road from Visakhapatnam to Gangavaram Port.
“The total distance that has been identified is 138 km, but we have been asked implement it in a phased manner. So, that is why, in the first phase, we are looking at completing the road from Visakhapatnam to Gangavaram port in the next two years,” Mr Bob said.
The total cost of the project, though not yet finalised, is estimated to be around Rs 5,500 crore and in the first phase, around Rs 1,100 crore has to be invested.
Each of these investment hubs that span several hundreds of square kilometres will have urban utilities like housing complexes, cinema halls, schools and hospitals and major industries in oil, chemicals, petrochemicals and several downstream industries in their heart. The investments into external infrastructure like roads, sea ports, airports and railnetwork would be made by the union government while power to these massive industries would be provided by the state government.
Besides their own investments into utilities like hospitals and schools, the state governments will also strike partnership deals with builders and other private players to set up housing complexes and other facilities.
Industrial investments would come from state-run and private firms — domestic as well as global. Chemicals and fertilisers minister Paswan, whose ministry conceptualised these massive investment hubs, said that the first PCPIR is likely to come up in Andhra Pradesh, followed by one in Gujarat. Sources said the ambitious investment hub in Andhra Pradesh is likely to be notified in a couple of months.
In the 603.6 sq km petroleum, chemical and petrochemical investment region (PCPIR) traversing the Visakhapatnam-Kakinada region in Andhra Pradesh, the central government would pump in about Rs 5,974 crore to build roads, rail links, rail freight stations, airports and cargo complexes while the state would spend Rs 2,132 crore to provide mainly water and power supply, it is understood. A larger chunk of infrastructure investment of Rs 10,565 crore would come from private investors, as per the proposal the state government has prepared, it is learned.
Gujarat is expected to invest Rs 18,691 crore in infrastructure — including funds from central government and private players. Karnataka, which is creating a PCPIR in 250 sq km and anticipating an industrial investment of Rs 2.3 lakh crore, will spend Rs 10,147 crore in infrastructure. This includes contribution from the central government and private developers. Orissa, which will create a 284 sq km PCPIR, will get infrastructure investments of about Rs 15,273 crore from all the three sources. The Left-ruled West Bengal will have a total infrastructure investment of about Rs 25,750 crore, while Tamil Nadu will pump in Rs 6,189 crore.
The Andhra Pradesh PCPIR has the potential for industrial investments of Rs 3,43,000 crore while Gujarat has an investment commitment from private players as well as central and state governments of Rs 50,000 crore. The West Bengal PCPIR has the potential to attract industrial investment of about Rs 80,000 crore and the one proposed in Tamil Nadu has the potential for Rs 24,178 crore.
In Andhra Pradesh, global majors like Total SA of France, Mittal Energy Investments, GAIL India, Oil India and oil refining and marketing major Hindustan Petroleum Corp (HPCL) are expected to invest Rs 32,000 crore. This consortium will set up a 15 million tonnes a year (mtpa) refining-cum-petrochemical complex. Besides this, HPCL is expected invest another Rs 10,000 crore to double its existing 7.5 mtpa refining capacity in the region.
Public sector refining major Oil & Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) would invest Rs 31,000 crore to set up a refinery and polypropylene unit in Kakinada SEZ. The state government anticipates exports of Rs 58,000 crore a year and tax receipts of Rs 46,500 crore a year from this PCPIR, which is expected to account for 9% of the total value of goods and services produced in the state.
Creating sophisticated infrastructure across the country to facilitate industrial development may take time. The government’s idea, therefore, is to select regions in the coastal area, where port connectivity could be provided easily to such industrial hubs in addition to upgradation of other modes of transport. Removing the need for multiple clearances and providing infrastructure would remove the two major hurdles for industrial development.
The states that have moved PCPIR proposals have to create bodies similar to Noida set up by the Uttar Pradesh government, the final administrative step before investments could come in. The ministry of environment and forests is also understood to be working with the pollution control boards in these six states to ensure that environmental disturbance because of large scale industrialisation is kept to a minimum.
To give a big boost to India’s $8.8-billion petrochem industry, the government also came out with a policy that aims at encouraging local production, consumption and export of petrochemicals and plastics. Neighbouring China has a strong presence in plastics and enjoys a substantial share of the global footwear and toys market.
The government intends to promote use of plastics in areas like agriculture storage and water conveyance, and facilitate research on waste management technologies. The policy envisages steps to attract more investments in the sector and to enable the country to capture a larger slice of the Asian demand for polymers. To achieve this goal, the government would strive to provide natural gas — the feedstock — at globally competitive prices, create infrastructure and further rationalise tariffs and taxes.
The government also intends to assist modernising the downstream plastic processing industry to enhance its capacity and competitiveness. By 2011, the per capita consumption of plastic products and synthetic fibre is expected go up three-fold from the current 4 kg and 1.6 kg, respectively. A petrochemical technology upgradation fund, a plastic development council and a task force on petrochemical feedstock to suggest measures to ensure the availability of petrochemical feedstock at internationally competitive prices are in the making.
Source: Economic Times