The YS Jaganmohan Reddy government is moving swiftly on the proposal to develop a non-major port at Machilipatnam in the Krishna district. Though the port at Machilipatnam was envisaged more than a decade ago, the project has not seen any progress until now. As soon as YSRCP came to power, a concessionaire agreement, signed with Machilipatnam Port Private Limited (MPPL) in which Navayuga Engineering Company Limited (NECL) was the lead promoter, was cancelled.
The port project was then revised by the current dispensation. As per the revised plan, the state government intends to develop the port with four berths at a cost of Rs 3,650.07 crore in the first phase. The government had recently sent the tender documents prepared by AP Maritime Board (APMB) to the newly constituted Judicial Commission for scrutiny and evaluation. After evaluation of the documents by the Judicial Commission, the State Government will call tenders from the prospective contractors to construct the port on an EPC basis.
As per government sources, Machilipatnam non-major port will be developed under the landlord model with a completion period of 36 months with state support to an extent of Rs 1,000 crore. Landlord ports are the ones where the port authority owns only the basic infrastructure and leases out to operators, mostly on a long-term concession basis while retaining all regulatory functions.
In the Landlord Port Model, a single entity from the private sector or few entities, owns and operates cargo handling equipment, berth handling, installation and maintenance of container terminal and installation and maintenance of storage facility. The AP Maritime Board (APMB) will provide Rs 90 crore for the acquisition of 225 acres required for Phase-I for the creation of infrastructure.