Bangalore: Unlikely partnerships have emerged in the bidding process for a Rs1,300 crore container terminal facility at the Ennore Port in Tamil Nadu, with companies determined to stay in the race till the final lap. As of Tuesday, the last date for submission of initial bids, 22 entities have applied for building the facility.
Ennore Port Ltd, owned by the Union government, has said only six entities will be pre-qualified to submit financial bids for the facility with an annual capacity for 1.5 million 20-foot equivalent units, the standard size of a container. This is because of a government policy on bidding criteria for cargo terminals at major ports. Ennore is the first project to apply the new eligibility criteria after the rules were finalized in January by the Planning Commission, which acts as the secretariat to the Prime Minister’s committee on infrastructure.
“Even after qualifying on financial, technical and experience criteria on their own for these projects, many firms face the threat of elimination because of the six-bidder-per-project rule,” said Kshitiz Bhasker, head of business development at Gammon Infrastructure Projects Ltd, which has bid for the project along with Spanish logistics and port operator Dragados SPL and Australia’s biggest construction firm Leighton Holdings Ltd. “As a result, rival firms and like-minded entities are teaming up to strengthen their chances of pre-qualification and be in the reckoning.”
International Container Terminal Services Inc. submitted its bid independently, while DP World bid along with IDFC Projects Ltd; PSA International Pte Ltd with ABG Infralogistics Ltd; Sical Logistics Ltd with Macquarie Group Ltd; NYK Line with Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. Ltd; Mundra Port and SEZ Ltd with Neptune Orient Lines Ltd; and GVK Power and Infrastructure Ltd with Mitsui and Co Ltd.
Similarly, Vedanta Resources Plc. has submitted its bid along with Eurogate GmbH and Co.; IL&FS Ltd with Punj Lloyd Ltd and Pembinaan Redzai Sdn Bhd; Larsen and Toubro Ltd with John Keells Holdings Plc.; Lanco Infratech Ltd with JSW Infrastructure and Logistics Ltd; while Terminal Investment Ltd has joined hands with Samsung Heavy Industries Co. Ltd, Shipping Corp. of India Ltd, Concor Ltd, CWC Ltd and Hind Terminals Pvt. Ltd; Vadinar Oil Terminal Ltd and Essar Shipping have bid together with Ports and Logistics Ltd and Wan Hai Lines Ltd.
Saqr Port Authority submitted its bid with RAK; IMC Ltd with ITD Cementation India Ltd and Srei Infrastructure Finance Ltd; GS Engineering and Construction Co. Ltd with Indiabulls Financial Services Ltd; and Group Maritime TCB with GE Maritime and Eredene Capital Plc.
Applicants will now be ranked on the basis of their experience scores in various fields, after which they will be short-listed for submission of price bids. The bidder willing to share the highest proportion of his annual operating gross revenues with the government port will get the right to run the new terminal.