|Krishnapatnam Port Company Limited (KPCL)|
|Operated by||KPCL- Krishnapatnam Port Company Limited|
|Owned by||Navayuga Engineering Company Ltd|
|Annual cargo tonnage||40.72 million tonnes (2014-15)|
|Annual revenue||₹1800 crores (2014-15)|
Krishnapatnam Port popularly known as KPCL is a privately built and owned all weather, deep water port on the east coast of India, located in the Nellore District of Andhra Pradesh. It is located about 190 km north of the Chennai Port and 18 km east of the city of Nellore. The port is owned and operated by the Krishnapatnam Port Company Limited (KPCL) which is 92% owned by Hyderabad-based CVR Group. The London-based equity firm 3i Group Plc owns the remaining 8% equity in KPCL.
Establishment and promoters
Krishnapatnam Port (KPCL) is India's largest private sector port. It was inaugurated on 17 July 2008 by the UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi. The port was built by the Navayuga Engineering Company Limited, the flagship concern of the CVR Group, under a build-operate-share-transfer (BOST) agreement with the Government of Andhra Pradesh. The port covers an area of 4,553 acres. The BOST agreement, valid for 30 years and further extendable to 50 years, requires the promoters to pay 2.6% of the port's gross revenue to the Government of Andhra Pradesh for the first 30 years. From the 30th year, that share increases to 5.4% and from the 40th year to 10.8%. The agreement also requires them to develop the port in three phases with the first phase being completed by January 2008, the second phase by 2012 and the final by 2017.
Connectivity and hinterland
As of 2015, KPCL is capable of handling 75 million tonnes (mt) of cargo per annum and is the deepest port of India with a draft of 18.5 metres. The hinterland of the port includes southern and central Andhra Pradesh, eastern Karnataka, northern Tamil Nadu and Eastern Maharashtra. The Port is linked to the Chennai-Kolkata rail line through a 19 km long line and is also connected with the National Highway 5 which is being upgraded from a 4 lane to a 6 lane highway.
Phases of development
The first phase of development of the port involved an expenditure of ₹1400 crores and was completed in 2009. In this phase the Port developed an annual cargo handling capacity of 25 million tonnes. Two mechanized Iron Ore Berths, a mechanized Coal Berth and a mechanized General Cargo Berth were set up in this phase. The second phase of the Port's development entails an investment of $2 billion and the enhancement of cargo handling capacity by 40 million tonnes. By 2017, when the Port is fully developed, it is expected to handle 200 million tonnes of cargo annually. The second phase of expansion will increase the total berths to twelve of which half will handle coal with the rest handling general, bulk and container cargo. The draft of the port is also to be enhanced from the present 18 metres to 21 metres.
In September 2012, the KPCL inaugurated its container terminal capable of handling 1.2 million standard containers a year. This terminal is equipped with 5 Panamax gantry cranes, two berths of 650m and a channel depth of 13.5m allowing large vessels carrying up to 8,000 containers to dock. The second phase of its development will involve the investment of ₹11,000 crores and the expansion of capacity by another 4.8 million tonnes. KPCL has entered into an agreement with Container Corporation of India (CONCOR) to develop a container freight station at the port and inland container depots in the hinterland to facilitate trade through the port.
Krishnapatnam port terminal set to emerge as a major trans-shipment hub on the East Coast following dynamic initiatives being taken up by some international shipping container liners.
When the port was inaugurated in 2008, iron ore constituted its most important cargo which peaked at 10.5 million tonnes in 2009-'10. Since the ban on export of iron ore from the Bellary-Hospet region of Karnataka, its shipments have dwindled forcing the port to diversify its portfolio. Coal is now the primary commodity handled by the port, its volume having expanded from less than 100,000 tonnes in 2008-09 to 11.3 million tonnes in 2011-12. The port now also plans to handle liquefied natural gas cargo, cars meant for exports, edible oils and fertilizers. During 2012-13, the port handled 21.2 million tonnes of cargo, of which three-fourths comprised imported coal. The Port handled 25.16 MT during the year 2013-14 against the target of 28 MT. The port registers very impressive growth of 60% for the year 2014-15 and ended up handling total cargo of 40.72 million tonnes up from 25.16 MT in the previous year.
Special economic zone
A 12,000 acre Special Economic Zone (SEZ) is being set up in the vicinity of the port by the Krishnapatnam Infratech Private Limited, a special purpose vehicle set up by KPCL. The SEZ entails an investment of ₹6,000 crores and is expected to create 30,000 direct employments. The SEZ is being designed by Mahindra Engineering and is to be a multi-product SEZ.
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