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Chennai Port creates new record in container handling

Date 02-Jun-2016
Subject Chennai Port creates new record in container handling

With the draught at its docks/terminals ranging from 13.5 to 17.5 metres, Chennai Port is today the deepest among the Major Ports, highlighted Mr Cyril George, Chairman of Chennai Port Trust (ChPT), while interacting with the media here on Tuesday. It can handle vessels of around 8,000 TEUs.
It was highlighted that the Port’s best-in-class infrastructure, strategic location, proactive management and skilled staff make it a facility of choice for the trade, handling POL, containers, cars, cruise vessels, edible oil, project, fertilisers and other bulk cargoes.
Chennai Port, the third oldest port with a history dating back 135 years, has 3 docks comprising 24 berths, two international container terminals, an oil terminal and a car terminal. It plays a major role in the economic development of the region, it was emphasised.

New box handling record

Chennai Port handled 1.566 million TEUs in 2015-16, the highest number of containers handled till date, surpassing the 1.55 million TEUs handled in 2011-12.
The Port registered a throughput of 50.06 million tonnes in 2015-16, as against 52.54 million tonnes in 2014-15, a decline of 4.7 per cent.

Advantages of Chennai Port
The Port is endowed with open storage area of 6,52,432 sq. m and covered storage area of 52,708.75 sq. m to cater to the needs of the trade. It is a cost-effective facility with well-established infrastructure facilities, pipeline connectivity, and rail/road/sea connectivity. It handles multiple commodities including larger parcels 37 m long/4.5 m high/336 tonnes of project cargo, and is a pioneer in car exports and coastal shipping. The Port’s container terminals are operated by internationally renowned private operators, said a release.
Challenges faced
Chennai Port faces stiff competition from 5 neighboring ports, Kakinada, Krishnapatnam, Karaikal, Kamarajar and Kattupalli, sharing the same hinterland and serving the same ex-im community. Moreover, the congestion of the roads leading to the Port, the metro rail work, and opening of only one gate on 24x7 basis has further burdened its smooth functioning. Besides, the delay in taking up major projects like North-bound EMRIP and South West-bound Maduravoyal has stalled Port performance.
Proactive measures initiated
* Mission Re-surge to reinvent the lost glory through various marketing initiatives and trade facilitation measures.
* Facilitate rail/sea-bound swift and cost-effective evacuation.
* Commissioning of 2 Harbour Mobile Cranes of 100-t capacity.
* Created common user container rail siding.
* 95 per cent completion of EMRIP and follow-up with state government for clearing Cherian Nagar, NTO Kuppam.
Various measures taken to address congestion issues
* Opening of 8-lane ‘O’ gate complex.
* Laning and widening of internal roads and monitoring road connectivity projects.
* Gate procedure automation, monitoring terminal gate management.
* Implementation of RFID-based document verification and access control system in coordination with Customs, NACFS, terminals and CISF.
* Deployment of dedicated traffic control Joint Task Force Team.
Trade facilitation measures
* Concession in vessel related charges by 5 per cent to 40 per cent for mainline container vessels and 15 per cent on vessel related charges for all container vessels
* Special concession in wharfage and reduction in VRC @ 61 per cent for transportation of automobiles through coastal RoRo
* Concession on vessel related charges of 10 per cent to 30 per cent for break-bulk vessels
* Reduced cost of deployment of port labour by introduction of revised manning
* Waiver of Port charges for container train handling
* Concession of Rs 150-200 in rail charges for container shuttle services
* Concession of 50 per cent in pilotage for marine shuttle services
* Reduction in floating crane charges by 50% when handled by ship crane
* Free storage period for cars, SUVs and MUVs exported through RoRo vessels extended from 10 to 20 days
* Reduction in VRC for break-bulk liners from 10 per cent to 30 per cent
* Volume-based concession of 5 per cent to 15 per cent in wharfage for edible oil cargo
Innovative steps initiated
* 1st container shuttle service between Chennai Port (HOM) and Tondiarpet ICD and marine shuttle service between Chennai Port and Kamarajar Port.
* First container train operation from JD (East) to Bangalore ICD operated by Distribution Logistics Infrastructure Ltd (DLI) as part of BCG recommendations.
* Coastal movement of cargoes between east and west coast of India.
* The maiden coastal RoRo voyage by vessel m.v. IDM Symex transported 800 cars from Chennai Port to the west coast (Pipavav) successfully on February 5, 2016. The next voyage is planned for June 2016.
* 70,000 sq m of Port land has been identified for creation of tanks for edible oil, chemicals etc., with full rake rail evacuation facilities close by.
* Started bunkering operations through barges at Outer Anchorage.
Marketing initiatives
The Port has been holding meetings with exporters, importers and agents of different cargo groups like liquid bulk, dry bulk, break-bulk, project, foodgrains, fertiliser, auto OEMs, edible oil, etc. to improve their handling and retain/attract cargo. Trade meets have been conducted at Sri City SEZ, Tada, Coimbatore and Bengaluru, and are planned at Salem, Karur, Ongole and MEPZ this year to attract clean cargo.
Chennai Port participated in Maritime India Summit 2016, inaugurated by the Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi in April, at the Bombay Convention Centre, Mumbai. More than 700 maritime delegates visited its stall to enquire about the trade facilitation measures.
Memorandum of Understanding between Chennai Port & Southern Railway
Chennai Port Trust signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Southern Railway for optimising the rail throughput of automobile traffic for export. It aims at facilitating transportation of automobiles from Walajabad to the Port.
Awards & recognition
Chennai Port was honoured as the "Best Tourist Friendly Harbour" by TTDC in March 2016, in recognition of the world class infrastructure and tourist-friendly services extended to cruise passengers and vessels calling at the Port.
Record performance
Chennai Port has improved its cargo handling efficiency and has repeatedly surpassed its previous records 21 times, the release emphasised.

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