The Senate Standing Committee on Maritime Affairs met on Thursday under the Chairperson-ship of Senator Rubina Khalid here at the Parliament House
The committee while taking up the briefing on concession agreement with Abu Dhabi Ports, Group of the UAE Government to operate the Karachi Gateway Terminal Limited were apprised with the salient features of the commercial agreement. It was briefed that the concession periods for the agreement is 25 years with USD 18.00 per cross berth move and a ground rent of PKR 1,100 sq. Mt. per annum and upfront payment of USD 50 M. It was briefed that the an investment of USD 102 M will be made in next five years by the terminal operator.
While discussing the outsourcing of Bulk Cargo Terminal the caretaker Minister for Maritime Affairs requested that in order to ascertain detailed briefing on the outsourcing of Bulk Cargo Handling an in camera meeting may be held because the agreement has not been signed as yet. However he told that the cabinet has approved the agreement and is at its last stage of execution. He further assured the committee that the concession agreement for Bulk Cargo Terminal is in larger interest of the country. He said that this outsourcing will bring modernisation and up gradation to the Karachi Port as well as assured revenue.
While vetting upon the detailed report regarding procurement tenders issued by the KPT in the last 10 years, It was briefed that engineering division has issued 16 tenders, civil works division issued 12 tenders and P&D division issued 26 tenders.
While taking briefing on the tenders of the Engineering Division the committee inquired on the delay in the repair, refurbishment and commissioning of BHD Ali P994B litronic on turn key basis by 6 years. The committee decided to hold a fact finding inquiry to probe into the matter of delay in bringing the machine back to service. The Committee sought report within one month. The committee also sought details on the project of accessories for the port department KPT. The committee deferred further deliberation on this agenda item till next meeting.
The committee also took briefing on the detail of all machinery and equipment hired by KPT on rental charges. It was briefed that in the year 2016, to run the port activities KPT hired one Pilot boat on contract basis for a period of one year ( extendable ) for Pilotage operation at Karachi Port. It was briefed that during the periods from 2016-2018 one pilot boat was hired due to non availability of KPTs own pilot boats, from 2019 onward two Pilot boats were hired for execution of shipping operation. Each Pilot boat is hired at a daily charge of Rs. 60,000/- including manning and maintenance by the vendors. The committee was informed that fuel is provided to these pilot boats by KPT. It was briefed that the revenue earned in terms of wet charges from 2016 to May 2023 is approx Rs15,000 million versus an expenditure of Rs224 million incurred on these Pilot Boats.
The meeting was attended by Senators Nuzhat Sadiq, Senator Mohammad Abdul Qadir, Senator Saifullah Abro, Senator Dost Muhammad Khan and Senator Muhammad Akram. Senior officials from the other attached departments were also in attendance.