Maritime boundary of Chattogram port extended

Abdus Sattar, Staff Correspondent, Chattogram,
Photo: Barta24

Photo: Barta24

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Chattogram,( The maritime boundary of Chattogram outer anchorage has been extended from Sitakundu to Sonadia and Kutubdia. Chattogram port will earn Taka one crore everyday as revenue from the extended maritime area.

The port authority estimates this revenue due to the extension of the maritime area of about 50 nautical miles. Recently a government statutory regulatory order (SRO) has been issued to this effect.

For the convenience of ship anchoring in that area, the sea has been divided into four parts. New buoys will be set up there. Directions were issued for the movement of boats or engine driven boats accordingly.

Chattogram Port Authority(CPA) informed that during last few years the arrival   of ships have increased in numbers creating situation difficult in handling them. This compelled the authority to extend the maritime boundary. The number anchoring ships increased manifold at Matarbari for LNG terminal, Matarbari sea port to be constructed by Japan International Co-operation Agency(JICA) and coming of ships centering Kutubdia deep sea. As part of the long time plan, for anchoring large number of ships at the economic zones of Anowara and Mirsarai the maritime boundary has been extended.

On April 3, a meeting for collection of the port dues and other charges from the ships in the extended area, a meeting was held in presence of Captain Shafiul Bari(ND) PSC, BN. It was decided in the meeting that the all dues will be collected according to International Port Act for providing protection, security, hydrographic and cargo handling facilities to the ships at the outer anchorage. The amount of earning will be Taka one crore everyday.

The harbor and marine member of CPA Captain Shafiul Bari told that everything will be monitored in the extended area through AIS and VHF networks. Earlier we did not get any charge from anchoring ships at the outer anchorage. On the contrary we had to give all kinds of security and protection to the foreign ships. But the ships would have to pay charges from now on.

The port officials informed that the containers, tankers and open ships carrying goods cannot directly enter the Chattogram jetty. The ships sized of 190 meter in length and with 9 meter draft only get the permission of anchoring at the jetty. Very big ships anchor Kutubdia deep sea and the small ships touch at three anchorages where a total of 93 ships can anchor. But there are frequent collisions and accidents as the number of anchorage points are less than the number of ships. As a result to avoid such accidents the ships used to anchor at outer anchorage. From now CPA will collect dues from these ships.

CPA chairman Rear Admiral Zulfiquar Aziz told the maritime boundary has been extended to facilitate the mega development projects surrounding Chattogram and Cox’s Bazar. We have planned to extend maritime boundary surrounding four areas of Sitakundu, Mirsarai, Maheshhali and Kutubdia. Now due to the extension of maritime area we will collect dues amounting to Taka one crore every day.

Earlier the maritime boundary of Chattogram port at the outer anchorage was limited up to five nautical miles. With the increase of ships in 2011 the area was extended up to seven nautical miles. Now there are three anchorage points for anchoring ships. Earlier the meaning of Chattogram port was seven nautical miles from Patenga. But now the port area will mean from Patenga, Sitakundu, Mirsarai up to Sonadia and Kutubbdia.