Adani Group looks almost certain to win the green-field Bhavanapadu Port Project in Andhra Pradesh as the other two companies that were short-listed for the bidding process along with Adanis had backed out in the final stage.
The department of infrastructure and investment, which had floated the tender for the selection of the port developer under Design-Build-Finance-Operate-Transfer basis, had received the technical and financial bid from only Adanis, said a senior government official. The government had set October 3 as the deadline for submission of bids.
“We are awaiting the Union home ministry clearance, which is mandatory, before proceeding to open the lone bid received from Adani,” Ajain Jain, principal secretary, department of Infrastructure and Investment told Business Standard on Friday. The developer would be declared if the bid was found to be in compliance with the bid parameters, according to Jain.
Located in the northern most coastal district of Srikakulam, very closer to the hinterlands of Odisha and Chattishgarah besides AP, the Bhavanapadu seaport is expected to play a key role in Adani Group’s coal and logistics business if awarded by the government. The project developer will also get 2,500 acres of land in contiguous with the port for the development of logistics infrastructure and the port-based industries among other facilities. The initial phase of the project would include five berths among other infrastructure.
In December 2015, the AP government had short-listed Adani group, and the two AP-based port operators — Gangavaram Port and Navayuga of CVR Group, which runs the Krishnapatnam Port — to take part in the bidding process. Adani group owns Mundra Port in Gujarat and runs a large port-based logistics business with operations spread across the Western and the Eastern seacoasts of India while Gangavaram Port and CVR Group operate Gangavaram and Krishnapatnam Ports in Andhra Pradesh, respectively.
The reasons for the two AP companies not submitting their bids for Bhavanapadu Project after entering the fray in the initial stage was not known. The efforts to reach out to the senior officials of the two companies yielded no response. The CVR Group was already selected as the developer of the green-field Machilipatnam port near the new capital city Amaravati.
Adani Group had evinced interest to develop a port-cum industrial park project in Srikakulam district almost 8-9 years ago.The company has revived its efforts towards this end when the bidding process was announced by Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu government soon after the state bifurcation.
AP government has been planning to develop a chain of seaports and industrial corridors along its 975 km long coastline on the East Coast, the second largest coastline next to that of Gujarat on the Western coast.