MUMBAI: Four quay cranes from DP World arrived at the shores of Jawaharlal Nehru Port near Mumbai which is India’s biggest container hub. The new terminal is designed to accommodate 800- 000 standard containers a year and is expected to start operating in 2015.
DP World Ltd has unloaded four new quay cranes purchased from Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co. Ltd (ZPMC) at Jawaharlal Nehru port in a development that will have ramifications on other cargo terminals looking to buy equipment from China’s state-run crane maker which lacks security permit to supply gear to India’s harbours.
“The four quay cranes were unloaded last week and is currently lying on the jetty,” a JN port official said. At least two more people briefed on the matter confirmed the development. India’s security agencies have denied clearance to ZPMC to sell gear to ports.
The reasons for the denial have not been disclosed by the government. This had hurt new container facilities planned by private firms at state-owned Mumbai port and VO Chidambaranar port in Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu. ZPMC is the world’s largest port crane maker with a 70% share of the global quay crane market. About 146 ZPMC cranes are currently operating at India’s ports including JN port, making it the largest supplier of port gear to India. It is mandatory on the part of private firms setting up cargo terminals to inform the landlord port on the equipment they have ordered for their facilities.
The landlord port will then seek security clearance from the government to allow such cranes to be installed. The private container terminals being constructed at Mumbai and Chidambaranar ports were denied permission to buy ZPMC cranes when this procedure was followed. Security clearance is not forthcoming for ZPMC cranes, a spokesman for the shipping ministry said. To be sure, JN port has not sought clearance to allow ZPMC cranes to be erected by DP World at its terminal. JN port would not elaborate on the reason for not seeking security clearance.
A spokesman for JN port declined to comment. Mint could not independently verify the view security agencies would take on the DP World issue. In a related development, US-based Terex Corp., Finnish company Cargotec Oy and Anupam Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd have been given security clearance to supply gear to Indian ports, a spokesman for the shipping ministry said. Anupam Mitsubishi Heavy Industries is a joint venture between Anupam Industries Ltd and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. The security clearance is valid for a three-year period, according to the guidelines for security clearance for port projects approved by the cabinet in December 2012.