Hyderabad: Infrastructure major GVK Group is expecting to complete in about two months land acquisition pacts for constructing the rail corridor of USD 10 billion Alpha Coal Project in Australia.
Two days ago, the Australian government gave approval to construct and operate the Alpha Coal Mine and a railway line between the mine in Galilee basin and the port at Abbot Point, near Bowen.
"We have already tied up 75 percent for the rail corridor through MOUs and Agreements. The balance 25 percent will be tied up in the next one or two months," GVK Vice-Chairman G V Sanjay Reddy said.
"Then, we will write to the (Queensland) government. And the government will acquire it and give us for 99 years," he added.
The total cost estimated for construction of 495-km rail corridor will be USD 3.5 billion, according to Reddy.
Last year, GVK had acquired 79 percent stake in the Alpha Coal and Alpha West projects and a 100 percent stake in the Kevin's Corner project in Queensland from Hancock Prospecting Pty Ltd.
GVK has also acquired a 100 percent stake in the rail line and 60 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) port as part of the "pit-to-port" logistics solution.
The Queensland government has also selected GVK's rail corridor as the 495 km north-south corridor for connecting the Galilee Basin to the Port of Abbot Point in Australia.
"We are already holding discussions with other coal mining companies to use the rail corridor services to the port. We do not need any investment from them. The services will be offered on reasonable commercial terms," Reddy said.
Gujarat-based Adani Group, besides others, has coal mines in Queensland province and a port at Abbot, which it had bought two years ago for nearly USD 2 billion.
GVK has maintained that its railway alignment is the most efficient and cost-effective option that will benefit the Galilee Basin for several decades to come.
One of the requirements of the government is to allow third-party access, which GVK has embraced from the outset, with a public expression of interest process for haulage commenced in September 2011, immediately after GVK acquired stake in the project.
The initial capacity and current approvals for the rail corridor are for 60 mtpa. The rail line, however, is scalable to 120 mtpa on the single line, whilst duplication and the addition of passing loops in the north would allow for expanded capacity in the coming decades.
This would satisfy Galilee and Bowen Basin rail capacity requirements, a GVK press release had said earlier.
First Published: Sunday, August 26, 2012, 13:19