The VO Chidambaranar Port (VOCP) on 15 May 2017 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Limited (TANGEDCO) for the upgradation of Coal Jetty I and II. As per the MoU, VOCP intends to increase the capacity of two of its Coal Jetties I and II from 6.25 MTPA to 24 MTPA. The MoU was signed by S Anantha Chandra Bose, Chairman of VO Chidambaranar Port Trust and M Sai Kumar, Chairman cum Managing Director of TANGEDCO. The estimated cost for upgrading Coal Jetties I & II is about Rs 800 crore.
Initially, Coal Jetty-I will be upgraded in about 24 months by constructing a new Coal Jetty-I of 300m x25m along with repair of the existing CJ-I. The project will make coal handling by the jetties much more voluminous and efficient and consequently bring down logistics costs. It will also allow for cheaper production of electricity which will be beneficial for industrial growth. With the upgradation of the coal jetties, TANGEDCO will be able to handle additional volume of coal cargo for the upcoming new power plants in Uppur and Kadaladi in Ramanathapuram district in Tamil Nadu.
There will be quicker turnaround of vehicles with the deployment of high tech handling equipments like two ship unloaders, each with a minimum 2000 TPH capacity and a high capacity conveyor system of 4000 TPH. This enhancement of handling capacity and upgradation of infrastructure will help TANGEDCO to utilize the services of the Port in a more cost-effective way. The linking of power generation from TANGEDCO’s Tuticorin plants to the National Grid will enable availability of additional power at reduced costs, which, in turn, can fuel industrial growth and employment generation.This MoU was signed under the Ministry of Shipping’s Project Unnati, under which a study, ‘Unlocking National Ports Potential’ was done to improve the handling capacity of Coal Jetties I & II.