Mumbai: Making an entry into the estimated $14 billion (Rs55,300?crore)?lucrative global dredging market, Chennai-based infrastructure development firm?MARG Constructions Ltd has bought a Chinese-built dredger for Rs50 crore.
The company will deploy the cutter suction dredger at Karaikal in Puducherry, where it is developing an all-weather, deep-water seaport. A cutter suction dredger cuts rock and digs hard soil and sand while a trailer suction hopper dredger picks up after it.
“We have acquired a dredger for our own captive use and for undertaking work for third parties as well when opportunities come,” said G.R.K. Reddy, managing director of the Bombay Stock Exchange-listed MARG Constructions.
MARG decided to buy its own dredger after dredging firms quoted high rates to undertake work at Karaikal port. The cost of dredging works has gone up by up to 40% in the last two years as a spurt in port expansion projects globally.
Dredgers are also covered by the new tonnage tax scheme, a tax based on the cargo carrying capacity (net tonnage) of a ship that lowers tax outgo for shipping firms compared with normal corporate tax.