Tamil Nadu signs Rs.70 bn agreements for port, refinery

July 2nd, 2008 - 11:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, July 2 (IANS) Tamil Nadu government Wednesday signed a number of agreements with ship building and power companies for setting up projects worth over Rs.70 billion ($1.6 billion) in the state. Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi was present at the signing ceremony.

One memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed with the Good Earth Maritime Ltd, which will build the shipyard at Silambimangalam of Cuddalore district, about 400 km south of Chennai, said the government.

The company has pledged an investment of Rs.10 billion.

The project will be implemented in two phases and an amount of Rs.5 billion will be invested in the first phase. Ships with 45,000 deadweight tonnes (dwt) to 80,000 dwt, will be built at this shipyard, expected to start functioning by 2010.

Good Earth is a trading group dealing with granite, iron ore and other minerals and its ships carry coal for the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB).

The government added that Rs.62.9 billion will be invested in Nagarjuna Oil Corp’s six-million-tonne per annum refinery at Cuddalore. This is said to be the single largest joint venture investment ever in the state.

Karunanidhi Wednesday laid the foundation stone remotely for the project. The refinery will provide feedstock for more units to be set up for petrochemical industries in the Cuddalore and Nagapattinam coast, officials said. The plant is expected to begin production by 2010.

The Hyderabad-based Nagarjuna Fertilisers holds 51 percent stake in the joint venture and Tata Sons holds 30 percent. Other investors include Cuddalore Port Development Co Pvt Ltd holding 10 percent, the Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corp five percent and Uhde, Germany, the balance.

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