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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sea Port of Bangladesh

Deep sea port authority soon

The government is going to form a 'Deep Sea Port Authority' soon to implement the much-awaited deep sea port project at Sonadia Island.
An additional secretary is likely to head the body, which would consist of experts from the related field and government officials of the ministry concerned and the Chittagong Port Authority.
The new body would be assigned to monitor the construction of the regional hub port through mobilizing Tk 10,500 crore, which is 70 per cent of the total project cost of Tk 15,000 crore.
According to the sources, the balance amount of Tk 4,500 crore will be provided by the Chittagong Port Authority (CPA).
A high official of the shipping ministry yesterday told The Independent that the ministry has prepared a proposal regarding the formation of the authority and it would be sent to the cabinet committee on economic affairs to be held on October 20.
"The Deep Sea Port Authority would be formed after getting nod from the committee. The authority will mobilise Tk 10,500 crore from the local capital market, bank loan and also from the foreign donor agencies as soft loan," he said.
"We will invite tender soon for preparing a detailed design to construct the proposed deep sea port," he added.
The grand-alliance government is yet to approve the five techno-economic feasibility study reports of Pacific Consultants International (PCI), a consultancy firm of Japan, the official told this reporter.
The PCI submitted the reports to the Shipping Ministry on construction of a deep seaport, on March 7, 2007 and they recommended the 'Sonadia Island' point, out of nine offshore points, as the most suitable site for construction of deep seaport in Bangladesh.
Acting secretary of shipping ministry Md Abdul Mannan Hawlader yesterday said that they would construct the port at any cost.
It will need five years to complete the construction work of the port.
Sources in the shipping ministry said Sonadia Island itself can act as a natural shelter for port basin and protection works against wave is minimal, required water depth of 14-mcd (meter cubic depth) is obtained by only three kilometre (km) long access channel and the 'capital dredging volume' is very high.
The study report proposed construction of the deep seaport as a regional hub to facilitate maritime trade with two provinces of China and seven states known as seven sisters of Eastern India, in addition to Nepal and Bhutan.
With the construction of the deep seaport, all other vessels calling at the Chittagong Port will take berth at the deep seaport jetties and will easily unload the cargo. Presently, the mother vessel cannot take berth at the existing CPA jetties situated on the bank of the river Karnaphuli, 10-km from the Bay of Bengal.
With the construction of the deep seaport, the annual container handling capacity would be nearly 30 lakh TEUs (ten equivalent units) and the cargo handling capacity would be more than 10 crore metric tons.
Similarly, annual revenue income of the Chittagong Port will also increase by more than Taka 2000 crore.

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