In a significant development for the Vizhinjam International Seaport project, the first batch of Chinese-manufactured cranes is set to arrive at the port site, marking a milestone in the ambitious infrastructure venture. The deal, signed in June 2018, has been a subject of debate due to concerns about India’s reliance on Chinese imports. Here’s a closer look at the details and implications of the AVPPL-ZPMC crane deal:
The AVPPL-ZPMC crane deal was initiated as part of the phase 1 works of the Vizhinjam International Seaport project, which is poised to become a crucial trade gateway for India. The cost of the cranes alone is estimated to be over Rs. 1,500 crore, making it a substantial investment in the port’s development.
Cranes Arriving Soon:
The eagerly awaited first batch of equipment, consisting of 12 cantilever rail-mounted gantry (CRMG) cranes and 4 Rail Mounted Quay Cranes (RMQCs), is scheduled for delivery at the port site within the next month. This delivery marks a vital step towards making Vizhinjam International Seaport operational.
It’s worth noting that the import of these cranes was approved by the Kerala government, despite the Union government’s previous decision to block the use of equipment manufactured in China in India’s publicly funded infrastructure projects. This decision has fueled discussions and criticism within the country.
In a move to ensure the quality and progress of the equipment fabrication, the CEO of Vizhinjam International Seaport Limited (VISL) has been granted permission to visit China. This step aims to guarantee that the cranes meet the required standards and specifications.
Controversy and Defense:
The crane deal has not been without controversy, with some critics arguing that it contradicts India’s efforts to reduce its dependence on Chinese imports. However, AVPPL has defended the decision, emphasizing that ZPMC is the world’s leading manufacturer of port cranes and asserting that the cranes meet the highest quality standards.
The deployment of these Chinese-manufactured cranes represents a significant step forward in the development of the Vizhinjam International Seaport. The project is expected to be operational by May 2024 and is projected to have a transformative effect on trade and economic activity in Kerala, potentially unlocking new opportunities for the region.
As the cranes arrive and are integrated into the port’s infrastructure, stakeholders will closely monitor their performance and the broader implications of the controversial AVPPL-ZPMC crane deal on India’s infrastructure development strategy. The success of the Vizhinjam International Seaport project remains a top priority for both the state of Kerala and the nation as a whole.