Engineering consultants start work for Matarbari port dev project

The engineering consultant team appointed for the development of Matarbari deep-sea port in Moheshkhali started its work yesterday.

The Chattogram Port Authority (CPA) on September 23 signed an agreement with Japanese firm Nippon Koei Joint Venture (JV) Company Ltd for the engineering and consultancy services of the Matarbari Port Development Project.

Nippon Koei was selected as the top-ranked consulting firm to render engineering related services with a negotiated contract price of Tk 234 crore.

The consultant team also includes Overseas Coastal Area Development Institute of Japan (OCDI), Japan Port Consultants (JPC) and a Bangladeshi firm Development Design Consultants Ltd.

The team will be responsible for the design work, tender assistance and construction supervision of the project, said Hiroshi Otani, team leader of Nippon Koei Co Ltd, at a press conference at the port building yesterday.

Also, the team would provide technology transfer to the CPA, he said.  The team consists of 30 experts from Japan, 18 from Bangladesh and 21 supporting staff, all of whom are Bangladeshi nationals.

The project is divided into two packages. The package 1 includes design, tender assistance and the construction supervision for the marine and civil works.

The package 2 includes services for the procurement of cargo handling equipment and port operation vessels.

The detail design would be conducted between November 2020 and June 2021. The schedule for completing tender assistance is from July 2021 to June 2022, and the construction supervision from July 2022 to December 2025.

Otani said the team hopes it would use the latest technologies from Japan, such as strut structure for jetty, seismic base isolation system for quay gantry crane, a special method for corrosion protection, and maintenance-free plant system.

The project director, Md Zafar Alam, who is also the member (administration) of the CPA, said they hope the team would be able to complete the works before the schedule.

CPA Chairman SM Abul Kalam Azad said the project is a fast-track initiative of the government and is an outcome of the concept of the Big-B, the Bay of Bengal Industrial Growth Belt, jointly announced by the prime ministers of Bangladesh and Japan.

The project aims at strengthening the port logistics capacity of the country by constructing a new commercial port and a port connecting road with the national highway, thereby contributing to the acceleration of logistics with neighbouring countries.

Initially, the construction of a coal jetty was planned for a 1,200MW coal-fired power plant in Matarbari. When the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) started the project to construct the coal jetty, it saw the potential of a commercial port.

The Matarbari Port will be developed in two phases.

In the first phase, a 300-metre multi-purpose terminal with a backup area of 29.15 acres will be constructed by June 2025. A 460-metre container terminal with a backup area of 50 acres will be built within December 2025.

Once constructed, the container terminal of the port would be capable of providing berthing facilities to big container ships with a draft limit of 18 metres and capacity to transport 8,000 to 10,000 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) of containers, the CPA chairman said.

In the multi-purpose terminal, large cargo vessels which can transport 80,000 to 100,000 tonnes of cargoes would be able to berth, he said. 

Currently, ships with as high as 9.5-metre draft can berth at the Chattogram port.


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