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Mumbai's JNPT refocuses on rail to stem Adani Mundra diversions

MUMBAI's Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) is now working toward expanding railway reliance, and more particularly the 'dwarf container' to stem cargo diversions to rival Mundra and Pipavav ports in Northwest India, reports IHS Media

24 March 2021 - 19:00
MUMBAI's Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) is now working toward expanding railway reliance, and more particularly the 'dwarf container' to stem cargo diversions to rival Mundra and Pipavav ports in Northwest India, reports IHS Media.

JNPT, which is losing ground to rivals, is hoping the dwarf container will be the game changer as will increase payload double stacked will transit tunnels and bridges without costly infrastructure upgrades.



Combined February Mundra volume hit 530,173 TEU, compared with 461,861 TEU at JNPT.



'The concept of dwarf container would be a game-changer as the rail movement of [export-import] cargo through double-stacked dwarf containers would significantly provide cost advantages to the customers and enhance rail traffic at JN Port,' the port authority said in a statement.



JNPT said it is working toward selecting a vendor for the management, operation, and maintenance of dedicated 'dwarf container yards' within the port area to kick off regular operations.



'Inside the dwarf depot, ISO ex-im containers will be destuffed/restuffed and then restuffed in dwarf containers for further movement on rail to and from the port,' it said.



'The dwarf containers provide a 67 per cent increase in volume when double-stacked and can carry a weight of 71 tons, against 40 tons by an ISO container,' JNPT said.



'Indian Railways has given a 17 per cent discount on haulage cost for double-stack dwarf container trains compared with double-stack ISO container trains coupled with additional volume benefit,' it said.



A study commissioned by Indian Railways found that rail hauling - modelled on dwarf containers - could become 10 to 12 per cent cheaper than moving containers by truck with a one-way option and 40 per cent based on headhaul and backhaul freight.



The study also produced comparative cost estimates between JNPT and private Mundra port for hauls to the northern corridor, which put the variance in favour of the former at 43 per cent if the intended model were to be introduced.



But one carrier official said: 'We would rather more double-stack trains with ISO containers.'


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