The International Container Transshipment Terminal (ICTT), Vallarpadam, wanting in connectivity to the east coast of India can heave a sigh of relief. It has got direct connectivity to and from Jebel Ali Port in the UAE. Simatech Shipping has set sail from here.
The arrival of vessel m.v. Sima Perfect of the CCG service on Wednesday marked the commencement of the direct weekly to and fro service from Cochin to Jebel Ali having a transit time of five days, the fastest in south India.
The vessel, which has a carrying capacity of 1,200 TEUs is a circular service - Jebel Ali - Cochin - Colombo - Chennai - Colombo - Cochin - Jebel Ali.
On its maiden voyage, Sima Perfect handled 422 TEUs at ICTT. “The Simatech service (CCG ) also offers ICTT the much-needed connectivity to Chennai on the east coast of India. In order to develop ICTT as a true transshipment hub, feeder connectivity to all Indian ports is a basic requirement. While ICTT is well connected to the west coast, connectivity to the east coast of India was an issue. However, the new service of Simatech addresses this long-awaited connectivity. Mainline services operating from ICTT can now even connect their Chennai containers int Cochin for transshipment to Europe,” said officials of the DP World Cochin, which operates the terminal.
Presently, traders from the hinterland opt for Tuticorin and Chennai for their shipments to Jebel Ali which are transshipped at Colombo with a transit time of over 15 days. “With the commencement of the new service, the ICTT will have direct weekly services to Jebel Ali offering trade in south India at a transit time of five to six days only,” operators said.