Projects Jan De Nul

Published on March 28th, 2017

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Jan De Nul-Royal Boskalis Team Set to Win JNPT Dredging Work

A joint venture between Jan De Nul NV and Royal Boskalis Westminster NV is set to win India’s biggest dredging contract yet by value by putting the lowest price bid of around Rs 1,966 crore for deepening and widening the channel of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT).

The price quotation of Jan De Nul and Royal Boskalis is 3.13 per cent lower than the Rs 2,029 crore (excluding service tax) approved by the cabinet last week for the project which involves deepening the channel to 15 metres from the existing 14 metres, widening the existing shipping channel from 370 metres to 450 metres for straight reach and extending the length from 33.5 Kms to 35.5 Kms.

When completed in 24 months from the date of award of work, the project will enable JNPT, India’s busiest container gateway, to accommodate container ships that can carry as much as 12,500 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs).

JNPT currently has a depth of 14 metres that enables container ships of 6,000 TEU ships to call with the help of tide.

Dredging International NV and Van Oord Dredging and Marine Contracting Co. NV were the other two entities that had applied on the tender.

None of the Indian dredging companies applied for the tender due to lack of experience in rock dredging, a major component of the work. Of the estimated 35.03 million cubic metres of material to be dredged from the sea bed, some 1.73 million cubic metres will be rock dredging.

The entire project cost will be funded through internal resources of JNPT with market borrowing, if necessary.

Currently, JNPT has the capacity to handle 5 million TEUs from four terminals. After the 5th terminal becomes operational in two phases, the capacity will rise to 9.8 million TEUs. Considering the expansion of the container vessel sizes on the main trade routes, it is anticipated that vessels of 8,000-12,500 TEUs size will call at JNPT.

The enhanced capability would help in handling larger vessels up to 12,500 TEUs besides economic benefits such as saving in vessel waiting time and savings on account of trans-shipment. Port users will benefit in terms of lower unit cost, direct and indirect tax benefits in addition to reduction in vessel traffic congestion at JNPT. This would add to the competitiveness of India’s EXIM trade, the cabinet said while approving the dredging work.

Over the years, the size of container ships has progressively become larger as it is much more economical to operate large ships as the cost of operation gets cheaper by as much as 40%.

With increase in container cargo volume and increase in capacity of container carrying vessels fleet worldwide, JNPT has decided to handle new generation container vessels with wider beam and deeper drafts. The new generation bigger size vessels need deeper channel depth to navigate.

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