A significant milestone has been achieved by Kolkata Port with the arrival of “M.V. LAKE D”, a cape-sized vessel, at Sagar Anchorage. The Sagar Anchorage is located almost 80 miles away from Kolkata’s Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port and about 25 miles from Haldia Dock Complex (HDC).
The press release by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways deemed M.V. LAKE D as one of the largest cape vessels of its kind which carries with it 66,000 MT of Steam Coal Cargo up for Nepal. The vessel, which was constructed in 2011, has a 20-membered Filipino crew. It set sail from Abbot Point in Australia and fueled up at Singapore. The vessel then reached Vishakhapatnam where it unloaded almost 95,810 MT of cargo before sailing for Sagar Anchorage.
The Ministry states that the Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port of Kolkata is facing a constraint of the draft in the channel as well as lock gate operation in the docks. The cargo vessel will sail directly to a floating jetty, avoiding the operations of lock-gate and allowing the barges to go fully anytime and discharge at Haldia Floating Terminal. An investment worth Rs. 170 crore for floating jetty and floating crane is in order. The port has taken such measures to promote trade for mobilizing full load vessels, importantly cape vessels for transporting cargo to Haldia Dock.
It is a landmark for the SMP as its port authorities managed to call such a cape vessel at Sagar anchorage despite its natural restraint of being loaded with the responsibility of maintaining and managing one of the longest and the most unpredictable navigational channels of the world, according to the chairman, SMP, Vinit Kumar. It is also very significant that it carried the 66,000 MT cargo in a single vessel, which otherwise would have been the work of two three vessels.
The lighterage operations have witnessed a profound growth along with a multitude of user-efficient measures like developed facilities, improved service, user-friendly charges, and efficient coordination with relevant agencies. All this will assist the Kolkata Port Trust in handling more than 65 million tonnes of cargo during the financial year 2021-2022.