(PTI) The West Bengal cabinet on Monday approved a proposal for issuing a letter of intent to Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone for development of a greenfield deep sea port at Tajpur, paving the way for an estimated investment of ₹25,000 crore, a senior minister said.
The West Bengal Maritime Board will issue the LoI to the Adani group, who was the highest bidder for the mega project, state Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim told reporters after the cabinet meeting held in the assembly.
"Following the technical and financial evaluation and completion of all formalities, the cabinet today accorded approval for issuance of letter of intent by West Bengal Maritime Board for development of the Tajpur port to the successful bidder, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (SEZ)," an official statement said.
Hakim said the project will create direct employment opportunities for 25,000 people.
"The port would entail an investment of ₹15,000 crore. The port-related infrastructure development and government investment would involve another ₹10,000 crore. Overall, ₹25,000 crore would be invested," he said, adding that it would create more than one lakh jobs indirectly.
Hakim also stated that the deep sea port would usher in a new era of development in West Bengal.
According to the statement, the greenfield port will provide quick access to international markets for Bengal-based industries.
All the eastern states and the northeast region of the country will benefit from the port's connectivity through highways and integrated inland waterways, it said.
"It will also be linked to the industrial and economic corridor from Dunkuni to Raghunathpur, being developed by the state," the statement said.
A senior state government official had in March said India's largest private port operator Adani Ports and SEZ Ltd has emerged as the highest bidder for the greenfield deep sea port project at Tajpur in a close fight with JSW Group.
Adani group chairman Gautam Adani met Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in December last year to discuss investment possibilities in the state.
He had also attended the latest edition of the Bengal Global Business Summit, the government's flagship programme to attract investment in the state.
During the last business conclave held in April, the Adani Group had committed ₹10,000 crore of investment over a decade in port infrastructure, data centres and undersea cables, centres of excellence in digital innovation, fulfilment facilities, warehouses and logistics parks.