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Japanese firm offers consultancy to Bangladeshi Matarbari port project

BANGLADESH's cabinet committee has recently appointed Japanese firm Nippon Koei Company to provide consulting services for the construction of a deep seaport in a deal worth US$28 million, reports London's Loadstar

04 August 2020 - 19:00

BANGLADESH's cabinet committee has recently appointed Japanese firm Nippon Koei Company to provide consulting services for the construction of a deep seaport in a deal worth US$28 million, reports London's Loadstar.

The firm will work on detail design, tender assistance, and construction supervision of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)-funded proposed deep seaport at Matarbari area in south-eastern Bangladesh.



The deep seaport will have a 16-metre water draft and will be able to accommodate 8,000 TEU postpanamax vessels, lessening Bangladesh's dependence on the feeder vessels to ferry export-import goods from the hub ports in Singapore, Colombo and Port Klang.



In mid-March Bangladesh's top decision-making body ECNEC, led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, approved construction of the seaport to accommodate deep-draft vessels.



Currently, the country's two seaports - Chittagong and Mongla - have up to 9.5-metre draft where vessels holding up to 2,000 TEU containers can anchor.



According to a feasibility study of the JICA construction of the port will cost more than $2 billion. JICA will provide a portion of the loans at 0.01 per cent interest while some parts will be charged 0.9 per cent.



The deep seaport, whose main navigational channel will be 350-metres wide, is expected to be completed by December 2026.



According to JICA's plan, the port will have a container terminal built on 18 hectares of land, a 460-metre berth where 8,000 TEU vessels will anchor, and it will have an annual capacity of 600,000 TEU to 1.1 million TEU in its first phase of construction.



At the initial stage the port will start works with two quay cranes, one multipurpose gantry crane, six rubber-tyre gantry cranes, two reach stackers, and 12 yard chassis tractors.



In the next phase, the container terminal will be expanded to 70 hectares, with a 1,850-metre berth, and handle 2.8 million TEU annually.



The seaport's multi-purpose terminal will be built on 17 hectares, with a 300-metre berth which will accommodate vessels of up to 70,000 dwt and handle 2.25 million tonnes of goods a year.



Government officials said the country's cargo handling capacity will increase considerably when the port comes into operation and could attract shipments for neighbouring countries.



'As our economic activities have increased significantly, the construction of a deep seaport is now a demand of time,' said Planning Minister MA Mannan after the ECNEC approval.



The Japanese company has been providing consulting services in Bangladesh with its subsidiary Nippon Koei Bangladesh in major construction projects since 2018. The company also conducted a preparatory survey on the Matarbari port development project.


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