New Delhi, Apr 5 (PTI) Essar Ports today said cargo traffic at its terminals soared 25 per cent to nearly 73 million tonnes last fiscal ended March 31.Also Read - Brutal Mass Firing: This CEO Terminated Over 900 Employees in US & India On a Zoom Call | Watch

Consolidated cargo handling across the company’s five operational ports in Hazira (Gujarat), Paradip (Odisha), Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh), Salaya (Gujarat) and Vadinar (Gujarat) rose to 72.86 million tons in FY 2016-17, compared to 58.27 MT in the previous fiscal. Third-party traffic grew by 60 per cent. Also Read - Gujarat's First Omicron Infected Patient's Relatives Test Covid Positive

“The growth in Essar Ports’ dry bulk cargo has been a remarkable 52 per cent at 30.39 million tons in FY16-17 as compared to 19.97 million tons in FY15-16,” the company said in a statement. Also Read - India Reports 2 More Omicron Cases, Centre Urges States to Take Steps to Control COVID Spread | Key Points

The anchor customer of Essar Ports’ dry bulk terminals in Hazira, Paradip and Visakhapatnam is group firm Essar Steel.

The 30 MT Hazira Bulk Terminal manages dry bulk, break bulk and project cargo for Essar Steel’s 10 MT Hazira Steel Complex. The terminal is being expanded to 50 MT capacity.

The 16 MT dry bulk terminal in Paradip handles pellets for Essar Steel while a similar capacity terminal at Visakhapatnam handles both iron ore and pellets for Essar Steel, NMDC and other major steel players.

The Visakhapatnam terminal is being expanded to 32 MT, the statement said.

“The substantial growth in cargo traffic at these ports indicates the heightened activity and capacity utilisation at Essar Steel,” it said.

Essar Ports’ Vadinar Oil Terminal, which receives crude and dispatches finished products for Essar Oil’s 20 MT Vadinar refinery in Gujarat, recorded a growth of 11 per cent of liquid cargo.

It recorded a throughput of 42.47 MT in 2016-17 compared to 38.30 MT in 2015-16.

Essar Ports CEO & MD Rajiv Agarwal said: “We expect higher growth in the coming years because of increasing capacity utilisation by our anchor customers and heightened economic activity in the country.”

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.