Bhubaneswar, Feb 12 (PTI) Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik will lay the foundation stone of the much awaited Subarnerekha port in Balasore district on Wednesday, Chief Secretary A P Padhi said.

The Subarnarekha port project is being developed by Chennai-based Creative Port Private Ltd (CPPL) which will own 49 per cent stake and Tata Steel with 51 per cent stake.

“We have already handed over 692 acre of land to the port developer and remaining 150 acre of land under the ownership of some private persons and the government, will be given soon,” Padhi said adding that the developers will start construction work as soon as they get 27 acre required for the approach road to the proposed port site.

Tata Steel Managing Director T V Narendran said: “We will soon start construction work for the project and the chief minister will lay foundation stone tomorrow.” The proposed port is expected to be built in 4-5 years.

Narendran said the Subarnarekha project will be beneficial for the steel plants in Jharkhand, West Bengal and northen parts of Odisha.

“The proposed port at Subarnarekha will be helpful for our Jamshedpur steel plant,” Narendran said adding that all the ports located in the state are useful for Tata Steel.

“While Dhamra Port is suitable for our Kalinga Nagar plant, Paradip Port will be good for our Angul plant,” Narendran said adding that the company would invest around Rs 3,000 crore in the project.

The construction of Subarnarekha port project is expected to be smooth as it has already got clearance from the Defence Ministry.

The Chennai-based CPPL had proposed construction of an all-weather deep-draft commercial port at Subarnarekha river.

CPPL had signed an MoU with the Odisha government on December 18, 2006 to develop the project. Later, the revenue sharing agreement was inked between the two sides on January 11, 2008.

According to the revenue-sharing agreement signed originally, the port would have an initial capacity of 10 million tonnes per annum (MTPA), which is to be raised to 40 MTPA over 10 years.

Odisha already has three operational ports at Paradip, Dhamra and Gopalpur.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.