The Kochi Corporation is all set to reap rich dividends at the Partner Kerala Meet. The business community has expressed interest in investing in six projects showcased by the Corporation.
The Meet organised by the Department of Urban Affairs (DUA)is an attempt to mobilise resources for the Corporations and municipalities that are unable to develop amenities in rapidly expanding spaces. The projects presented by Corporation to be implemented in Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) model are a commercial-cum-office complex at Edappally and Kacheripady, premium commercial complex at Padiyathukulam, a shopping complex at Manapattiparambu in Kaloor, biomedical waste plant at Brahmapuram, septage treatment plant on Cochin Port Trust land and premium commercial hub and city centre at Kaloor. The Shaws business group has expressed interest in investing in all the projects except the waste plant and the septage treatment plant.
The Shaws signed Expression Of Interest with the Corporation for the projects. “The investors were willing to invest in the six projects presented by the civic body on day one of the summit. Subsequently, the Corporation signed EoI with Shaws group for these projects,” said A S Anuja, Additional Secretary of the Corporation.
Thee EoIs will be forwarded to the committees under the state government for further scrutiny. “We can expect to sign an MoU regarding the projects soon,” he said.
Each project showcased for investment under the PPP model was worth crores of rupees. The commercial-cum-office complex at Edappally and Kacheripady are pegged at Rs 55 crore each. The premium commercial complex at Padiyathukulam would need at least Rs 19 crore and a shopping complex at Manapattiparambu in Kaloor would require Rs 20 crore. The premium commercial hub and city centre at Kaloor is the biggest infrastructure project pegged at Rs 95-crore. The two waste management related project, the biomedical waste plant at Brahmapuram and the septage treament plant would need Rs 4 crore each for implementation.
Meanwhile, controversies surfaced during the meet. Take the case of Rs 20 crore shopping complex at Manapattiparambu. The GCDA has also invited investment for a bigger shopping mall in Manapattiparambu at a cost of Rs 181.89 crore.
They bring to light the lack of planning and vision. Both the officials and bureaucrats of Corporation admit that some of the proj seriously lack in vision.
However, Deputy Mayor B Bhadra was of the opinion that the civic body has invited investment in Manapattiparambu to generate productive investment on the civic body’s unproductive land.
“The GCDA has invited investment in their property at Manappattiparambu. Likewise, the civic body also has some land which is yet to be tapped,” she said.
According to the Kochi Corporation, private investments are required to create shopping facilities, hotels and recreational facilities on the land owned by the civic body. A financially sound and technically competent private entity will be entrusted for a pre-fixed time period on a Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis. The investor will be selected through a transparent bidding process. The Corporation says that it has already conducted a preliminary visit and reconnaissance survey to assess the commercial potential of the areas designated for private investment.