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JNPT to use foreign dredging company for channel expansion

Mumbai: In an unexpected move, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) executives have bypassed state-owned Dredging Corporation of India  (DCI) and short-listed four international dredging companies to handle the Rs 800 crore (US $ 17.8 million) planned expansion of the channel common to both JNP and Mumbai Port. Although DCI has traditionally had a monopoly on all domestic dredging projects, Netherland based Boscalis and Van Oord BV as well as Belgian firms Jan de nul and Dredging International are all in the running to be in charge of deepening the channel to 14 meters as part of the first phase, due for completion in November 2008. The second and final phase of the project - slated for completion after 2012- will see the channel depth increased to 15 meters.  [03/11/06]

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