Krishnapatnam port to compete with Chennai and Ennore for car exports
The privately-run Krishnapatnam Port in Andhra Pradesh is likely to compete with Chennai and Ennore ports to handle export of cars that are manufactured in the Chennai and Bangalore regions.
The port, located 180 km north of Chennai, is constructing a roll-on roll-off berth in the south terminal.
“We hope to have the berth ready to handle cars by the first quarter of 2013-14,” said Anil Yendluri, Chief Executive Officer, Krishnapatnam Port and Director, Krishnapatnam Rail Co Ltd.
The port is in discussion with all the car manufacturers, he said but did not divulge their names. Hyundai, Ford, Nissan and Renault make cars in the Chennai region. Many officials of the manufacturers have already visited the port, he said. The Chennai port annually handles over three lakh cars while at Ennore Port, the cumulative car handling has crossed two lakhs. The Ennore port commenced car handling in September 2010.
Yendluri claimed that Krishnapatnam being a private port, there is an advantage for customers in getting flexibility in rates.
However, since there is a space constraint in Chennai and Ennore ports, for manufacturers, the next available option is Krishnapatnam, which is accessible through both rail and road. The port has nearly 45 km of railway line inside the campus, he said.
He felt that distance was not an issue that will stop the manufacturers looking at Krishnapatnam. If they want space and cost advantages, they will consider this port, he said. The port is promoted by the Hyderabad-based C.V.R. Group. The group’s flagship company, Navayuga Engineering Company Ltd, is the EPC contractor for the port.
Meanwhile, the port has commissioned five super post Panamax rail-mounted quay cranes at its container terminal. The all-weather terminal can handle 1.2 million TEUs (twenty foot equivalent units) annually. With a draft of 18 metres, the port is capable of handling largest container vessels, he said. The cranes were commissioned for the container vessel Buxhill, an MSC-operated weekly service connecting Krishnapatman port and Colombo.
Yendluri said there is a plan to increase the container handling capacity to six million TEUs in the next four years — making it one of the largest container terminals on the East Coast.