Dhaka – The government has approved nearly 707.67 million dollars to improve the country’s second largest maritime port located in the south-western district of Bagerhat, a senior minister said on Tuesday.
The Executive Committee of National Economic Council headed by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at a meeting in Dhaka gave the go ahead to the project along with few other development schemes involving total of 1.6 billion dollars (13,639.01 crore taka), according to Planning Minister Abdul Mannan.
He said the meeting approved a total of nine projects.
Under port development project, the authorities will modernize the amenities and increase the cargo handling at the Mongla Port, the minister said adding that the Shipping Ministry would implement the modernization project.
The Indian government will provide a Line of Credit worth about 524.87 million dollars while Bangladesh government will provide the rest 182.80 million dollars. Once the development work is completed, neighbouring India, landlocked Bhutan and Nepal will be able to use the port facilities for their trading.
The port will be able to additional 15 million tons of cargo and 400,000 Twenty-feet Equivalent Units of containers after the completion of the project.
The port up-gradation project was drawn considering the other mega development projects that include the Dhaka-Mawa-Mongla Highway, the special economic zone adjacent to the Mongla Port, Padma Bridge construction, Khan Jahan Ali International Airport, Extension of Mongla EPZ and the construction of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant.
The Mongla Port, which was known as Chalna Port on the Poshur river at the time of its founding in 1950, has a11 jetties and eight warehouses at this moment. A major road was constructed to connect with the southern city of Khulna in the past years.
Under the new project, the government will construct container terminal will moder facilities at Jetty Number 1 and 2, construction of container handling yard and container delivery yard with all facilities.
It includes construction of service vessel jetty, shed and office, extension of port building, construction of Mongla Port Authority tower, port residential complex with community facilities, mechanical workshop, equipment yard, and marine workshop complex among others, according to the project document.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the meeting stressed the need for planting trees along both sides of the roads and highways as well as keeping water bodies and water reservoirs in case of constructing large-scale infrastructures, the planning minister said while briefing reporters in Dhaka.
She also suggested installation of more scanner machines at the ports and in other areas where it is necessary, ensure a strong waste management system as well as setting up of Central Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) where it is necessary alongside constructing modern slaughter houses in the cities and towns.
The other projects approved in the meeting are Rajshahi metropolis city integrated infrastructures development with 345.13 million US dollars (2,931.62 crore taka), Freedom Fighter late Alhaj Kamal Uddin Road Development Under Noakhali district with 33.21 million US dollars (282.11 crore taka), Upgrading Karnaphuli Tunnel link road including Anwara upazila link road with 47. 94 million dollars (407.08 crore taka), Shariatpur-Janzira-Naodoba (Padma Bridge approach road) development with 198.91 million dollars (1,682.55 crore taka), Modernization of ports with necessary facilities at Paturia and Daulatdia with 159.11 million dollars (1,351.70 crore taka), Protecting the establishments from the left river bank of Padma under Charghat and Bagha upazilas in Rajshahi with 85.01 million dollars (722.24 crore taka), Integrated Livestock Development at the now defunct enclaves and char areas with 15.18 million dollars (128.96 crore taka) and Integrated livestock development at Haor areas with 13.91 million dollars (118.13 crore taka).