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Puri port blueprint drops anchor

Bhubaneswar, April 5: Navyug Engineering, a Hyderabad-based company, today proposed to construct a port at Astarang in Puri district, five months after Chennai-based Creative Port Development Private Limited signed an MoU with the state government for developing a modern deep-water, all-weather, mechanised port on the Subernarekha mouth at Kirtania in Balasore.

If plans fall in place, Astarang would be the fourth port in the state to be developed by private promoters.

While an all-weather, modern port is being developed at Dhamra in Bhadrak by Dhamra Port Company Limited, Orissa Stevedores Limited has taken over the Gopalpur seasonal and minor port to develop it into an all-weather port.

Representatives of Navyug Engineering, who submitted a blueprint to the government and made a powerpoint presentation before chief minister Naveen Patnaik today, said they were also keen to set up a 1,320-MW thermal power plant and a flyash plant near the proposed port at an estimated cost of Rs 5,600 crore.

Elaborating on the nitty-gritty, company representatives said the proposed port will be constructed in three phases. While an estimated Rs 1,500 crore would be invested in the first phase, while Rs 2,000 crore and Rs 2,500 crore will be invested in the second and third phases, respectively.

The port will have two coal handling berths, one iron ore and steel berth and another multipurpose berth. Besides, stockyards and warehouses will also be constructed.

Commerce and transport minister Jaynarayan Mishra said the port is expected to be built on a build-own- operate-share-transfer basis. It will remain under the ownership of the developer for 50 years.

The company has offered to share 2.6 per cent profit for the first 30 years, 5.2 per cent during the period of 31-40 years and 10.40 per cent for the next 10 years. It will not give any dividend to the government, if it does not earn profit, he said, adding that no final decision on concessions has been taken so far.

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