Proposed Sonadia Deep Sea Port – A Future
Communication Hub of South-East Asia
1. Sea ports all over the world act as economic and communicational hubs. The leading sector of a country like Singapore is its deep sea port. Theoretically, deep sea ports can be defined as economic infrastructures at sea having enough space to accommodate and harbor large container vessels with adequate draft.
2. Bangladesh stands on the vertex of the Bay of Bengal, blocking sea access to the entire region lying north, north-east and north-west. This geostrategic advantage could offer Bangladesh real opportunities to play a major role in regional seaborne trade.
3. Sonadia, a small island ...view middle of the document...
The distance will reduce to one-fourth if Sonadia deep sea port is utilized for the same trade.
7. Connectivity to China. The cargo from Kunming in China has to travel about 1,800 km over land to reach the nearest sea port before it is transported to Europe, traversing a sea distance of 18,300 km. In future, the same cargo may be transported through Sonadia savings a net distance of 4,000 km.
8. Opportunities for Nepal and Bhutan. About 40 percent of the total transportation at Calcutta port belongs to Nepal and about 10 percent to Bhutan. Sonadia port, with bigger capacity, would become a better alternative for them.
9. Potential Competitors.
a. Myanmar. India has come to an agreement with Myanmar to connect her Seven Sisters to the sea via Sittwe port of Myanmar and open up trade routes to South-east Asia. Calcutta and Sittwe ports will be connected over 539 kilometers of sea route. Myanmar has also decided to build two other deep sea ports in Kyaukphyu and Dawei.
b. India. Both Calcutta and Haldia ports suffer from chronic siltation of the Hooghly River. To mitigate this problem, India has also planned for two deep sea ports at Sagar Island and Diamond Harbor.
10. Competitive Edge for Sonadia. The Sittwe port, even after development works, will not be worth of larger trade vessels. Thereby, Seven Sisters’ trade will still have to be carried out through Calcutta port by traveling extra miles. Sonadia, hereby, would remain as a better option. The deep sea port in Kyaukphyu, located further towards south, will remain disadvantageous due to its distance and limitations of draft. The Dawei deep sea port will particularly serve Thailand having no impact on Bangladesh.
The Challenges on the Way
11. Huge Budgetary Requirement. Construction of a deep sea port will demand a huge amount of budget along with...