The Visakhapatnam Port Trust
(VPT), which is continuing its supremacy over other ports in cargo handling, is attracting a large number of Panamax vessels after the first phase of deepening in Outer Harbour.
The VPT, which was handling vessels with 195 metres LOA (length over all) and 10.21 m draft till recently, has attained the capability to handle Panamax vessels of 230 m LOA, 32.5 m beam and 0.7 m. draft with progress in completion of Inner Harbour deepening.
The port is catering to Panamax vessels with 11 m draft. It will have night navigation for Suez max tankers calling at Outer Harbour shortly
, once it is widened further.
The VPT has undertaken work on augmenting its capacity by deepening the channels in the second half of 2005-06.
Arrival of bigger ships will give the trade a better freight advantage over others, thereby decongesting the Outer Harbour.
The second phase of deepening the Inner Harbour is proposed through one of the Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) operator to facilitate arrival of Panamax vessels of 12.5 m draft.
Visakhapatnam Steel Plant and Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL.NS)
are the major beneficiaries due to arrival of Panamax vessels.
While SAIL is getting coking coal from Australia for its units in other States, VSP is nominating gearless Panamax vessels. Steam coal is also being brought for various steel plants.