VPT handles record traffic
The Visakhapatnam Port has handled 61.02 million tonnes of cargo during 2016-17 fiscal, registering a growth of 7 % over last year’s traffic of 57 million tonnes. It has also achieved an operating surplus of Rs. 40 crore compared to last year. The port was on the growth path after five years and was able to attract 2 million tonnes of additional cargo from new customers in spite of stiff competition from neighbouring private ports and volatile economic conditions. This was made possible due to vigorous marketing efforts, Visakhapatnam Port Trust (VPT) Chairman Mr. M.T. Krishna Babu, IAS told press persons.
The port handled 11.42 million tonnes of iron ore and pellets as against 5.98 million tonnes last year and a record quantity of 6.43 million tonnes of container cargo as against the previous record of 5.15 million tonnes in 2015-16. A record number of 3.67 lakh TEUs of container cargo was handled as against 2.93 lakh TEUs in 2015-16. A record quantity of 10.17 lakh tonnes of gypsum was handled as against 7.60 lakh tonnes last year. There was, however, a slump in steam coal (4 million tonnes) as against 8 million tonnes and also coking coal (4.3 million tonnes) as against 5 million tonnes. He exuded confidence that the VPT would secure the fourth place in the country in cargo handling after Kandla, Paradip, and Mumbai ports. Mr. Krishna Babu said that wheat imports resumed at the port after a lapse of nearly a decade. A total of 4.17 lakh tonnes of wheat was imported from Russia, Ukraine, and Australia. “We are concentrating more on clean cargoes and reducing the dirty cargoes to the extent possible. While handling dirty cargo, we are taking all pollution control measures and adopting latest technologies to keep pollution within the prescribed limits,” he said.