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Tuticorin Coal Terminal at VOCPT heads for liquidation

Tuesday, 03 Aug 2021
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Tuticorin Coal Terminal is heading for liquidation after a creditors’ panel rejected the expression of interest (EoI) filed by two entities to buy the facility located at the Centre-owned V O Chidambaram Port Trust (VOCPT). This is the first public-private-partnership (PPP) project in the ports sector to head for liquidation.

The seven million tonne capacity terminal is developed by ALBA Asia with 74 percent stake and Louis Dreyfus Armateurs SAS (LDA) holding 26 percent. ALBA Asia is the Indian joint venture dry bulk port operating company controlled by French shipping group Louis Dreyfus Armateurs SAS.

The EoIs filed by Felguera Gruas India and V K S Mining Services were rejected by the Committee of Creditors (CoC) led by Bank of India on valuation grounds. The terminal operator also owes money to Felguera Gruas, the Indian unit of Spanish firm Duro Felguera S A, for suppling shore unloaders to the facility.

A bankruptcy court in Mumbai has initiated insolvency proceedings against Tuticorin Coal Terminal after Bank of India filed a petition seeking to recover unpaid dues of Rs 90.87 crore after the facility was abandoned by the PPP operator. The terminal owes some Rs 355.79 crore to a clutch of seven banks led by Bank of India.

To salvage the situation and recover money, the lenders have asked VOCPT to terminate the concession agreement signed with Tuticorin Coal Terminal and pay the debt due to them.

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