Nine bidders, including JSW Energy-Leighton Contractors and GVK-Samsung consortia, are in the race to develop the Rs 3,000-crore Tadadi port project in Karnataka. Sources said the other bidders, who had put in request for qualification (RFQ) to develop the project, were GMR Infra, Mundra Port, Gammon India, Vadinar port, DSC Ltd, Navayuga Engineering and Malco Power. The last date for the submission of RFQs was March 14.
The multi-purpose, all-weather, greenfield port will have a capacity of 34.1 million tonne per annum. The state government has already conducted a feasibility study for the public-private partnership project. The selected bidder will be responsible for design, engineering, construction, operation and maintenance of the project.
On behalf of the state government, Karnataka State Industrial Investment and Development Corporation will oversee the bidding process.
The port will be situated on the estuary of the Aghanashini river.
The backwaters of the river have a huge waterfront area, which makes the location a natural harbour for a port.
The Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board has already acquired around 1,819 acres of land for the development of the port.
The port is 25 kilometres away from Tadri, at Ankola. The nearest railway line to the port is the Konkan Railway connecting Mumbai and Kerala.
Two new railway lines between Hubli and Ankola, and Honnavar and Talguppa have been proposed. The port is also connected by national highways through NH63 and NH4 to Hubli, Tadas and Kumta.
The port would cater to the districts in North Karnataka, especially the iron-ore belt in Bellary-Hospet. While a part of exports from this belt is handled by the two minor ports at Karwar and Belekeri, a significant amount of iron ore is transported to Ennore, Mormugao and Krishnapatnam for exports. The Tadadi port will be the fourth port in the state. Karnataka has one major port at Mangalore and two minor ports. The New Mangalore Port Trust is in the southern part of the state and majorly handles liquid cargo.