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Talks Sep 5 for Vizhinjam Port's central funding

Posted on Aug 30 2014 | IANS

New Delhi/Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 30 : Official talks will be held in Delhi Sep 5 to finalise conditions for central assistance to the proposed Vizhinjam Port project, Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said Saturday.

Chandy, Minister for Ports K. Babu and senior officials held talks with union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Delhi Saturday about the central government's clearance for the viability gap funding for the Rs.5,000-crore expected first phase cost of the project.

"The talks went off well. Some conditions have to be finalised and for this a high-level official meeting will be held in Delhi Sep 5," Chandy said.

The required clearance for this project that has been hanging fire for close to two decades has been obtained.

Five companies have been shortlisted for developing this port and once the issues concerning the viability gap funding are decided, the tendering process will be finalised.

The proposed port is to come up near the famed Kovalam beach and is to be completed in three phases. Once constructed, a ship with a capacity of 18,000 TEU can berth here.

A container ship's cargo carrying capacity is measured in twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU).

The Vizhinjam port site has a natural depth of 24 metres, one of the deepest in the world and hence requires no dredging.

The proposed port is located close to the busy international shipping route and is envisaged to handle 4.1 million containers annually.

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