To start coastal shipping services to Bangladesh soon
Container Corporation of India (Concor) plans to invest ₹4,500 crore in the next four years to add 270 rakes to its existing fleet of 343 rakes.
The State-owned company intends to serve the increasing domestic demand for cargo movement by containers using rail and coastal routes.
“This year, Concor plans to invest ₹1,000 crore on infrastructure, dry ports and IT systems,” said V Kalyana Rama, Chairman and Managing Director, Concor.
The State-owned organisation is exploring the use of containers to transport break-bulk cargoes like cement and foodgrains. “The use of containers for cargo movement within the domestic market is still minuscule,” he told newspersons.
Concor plans to add 4,000 containers to its existing strength of 24,000. They will be used only in the domestic market.
Last year, the company phased out 2,000 old containers and added 8,000. There is a plan to add 10,000 containers with an investment of around ₹300 crore, and a global tender will be floated shortly.
“Containers are imported mainly from China,” he said.
Rama said after testing coastal shipping from Kandla to Thoothukudi via New Mangalore and Kochi, Concor wants to extend this up to Bangladesh port, which can be also be serviced under coastal shipping. There is a huge demand in Bangladesh with India supplying materials like clinker and cement.
“You will shortly hear about the Bangladesh service,” he said.
He added that “coastal shipping from Kandla to Bangladesh could happen only by going round Sri Lanka. This can be done in cost-effective mode.”
In a bid to retain customers, Concor has introduced the ‘one year-one tariff’ scheme under which customers are offered a single tariff for the whole year, irrespective of any cost escalation. This will ensure price stability throughout the year. “There are no conditions are attached to the scheme,” he said.
For the year ended March 31, 2019, Concor reported net profit of ₹1,200 crore on revenue of ₹7,200 crore. It handled 3.83 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) last year across its 83 terminals.
“We hope to have 10-12 per cent growth in both volume and top line this year,” he said.