GVK to construct 60-MTPA port in Australia
Hyderabad-based GVK has signed a contract to construct 60-MTPA port in Queensland, Australia along with two other consortium partners. Hancock Coal Infrastructure, a subsidiary of GVK, will build the T3 port terminal for Alpha Coal project at Abbot Point along with Samsung C&T Corporation, a subsidiary of the Korean conglomerate Samsung and Australian-based Smithbridge Group.
Announced as one of the key projects during the visit of Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, the award of construction contract comes after GVK received all the Tier 1 approvals for the Alpha Project. This is a ‘pit-to-port’ project being built at a cost of US10 billion. The first phase of the project involves a 30 MTPA mine, a 500 km railway line and a 60 MTPA port. The other construction contracts for the project such as mine infrastructure, the wash plant and rail will be announced in the next few months.
Samsung C&T is the ‘major’ partner in the construction JV and will provide a majority of the steel and supply ship loaders from Korea and other Asian countries. Smithbridge will be responsible for engineering, marine works and providing local Australian expertise. The multi-billion dollar deal between Samsung and Smithbridge is to enter into a construction contract with GVK’s Hancock Coal Infrastructure for the Terminal 3 onshore and offshore infrastructure at the port of Abbot Point in North Queensland.
The port of Abbot Point is situated 25 km north of Bowen. It will be serviced by GVK Hancock’s new 500-km standard gauge railway, which will deliver 25,000 tonne per train load of coal. Once fully constructed, the port will consist of a stockyard, two rail receiving dump-stations, and a piled jetty structure extending 3.8 km north-north east from the shoreline. This will also consist of two berths and civil infrastructure to support the port project, as well as ship-loaders and stacker reclaimers. It is expected to be ready to deliver first coal 36 months from the commencement of construction.
Dr. GVK Reddy, chairman, GVKPIL said, “This is a key strategic development for us and further underscores our deep commitment to the Alpha Coal project. After receiving all the Tier 1 approvals, this is the first major step towards finalising the construction contracts and completing the financing for the project which is well underway."
GV Sanjay Reddy, vice chairman, GVKPIL said “ Given the size of this project and the complexities involved, both Samsung C&T and Smithbridge will play a crucial role in areas such as construction supervision and program management. We are confident that this partnership will yield significant synergies for all parties involved."
Hyung Kim, EVP, head of civil infrastructure business unit, Samsung C&T said, "We are delighted to partner with GVK and are pleased with the confidence reposed in us by Hancock Coal Infrastructure. This decision is based on the numerous opportunities that this project offers. We appreciate the tremendous support that we have received from both GVK and Smithbridge and look forward to working towards the success of this project."
Smithbridge group managing director, Albert Smith, said, “We are pleased to be the Australian joint venture partner with Samsung C&T for the design and construction of the Abbot Point Terminal 3 Port project. We look forward to developing a high quality engineering solution built on work already done and delivering a very cost efficient result."
In addition to Smithbridge, a number of other Australian subcontractors will be involved for the erection and assembly of the land-based equipment through the provision of construction equipment and labour, which will form a significant part of the project.
GVK has received the all-important strategic Federal Environment clearance for its Alpha Coal and Rail Project. The development of GVK’s (T3) Terminal 3 at the Port of Abbot Point, near Bowen has also been approved recently by the Federal Govt under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). GVK said it followed a rigorous and detailed environmental assessment process for the project. For instance, GVK has employed 275 environmental personnel in its study work to ensure that this project has a very high environmental standard and values.