Delayed consignment of fertilisers finally arrive at Dry PortThe first consignment of Nepal-bound fertilisers, which was stuck at the Vishakhapatnam Port, in India, for quite some time, due to an unavailability of railway rakes, finally arrived at the Dry Port in Sirsiya, in Birgunj, on Sunday.
The first consignment of Nepal-bound fertilisers, which was stuck at the Vishakhapatnam Port, in India, for quite some time, due to an unavailability of railway rakes, finally arrived at the Dry Port in Sirsiya, in Birgunj, on Sunday.
Agriculture Inputs Company (AIC) had imported a total of 30,000 tonnes of urea (a chemical fertiliser) via the Vishakhapatnam Port. However, Ajay Kumar Shrivastav, chief of the company’s Birgunj Regional Office, said only a single rake carrying 2,550 tonnes of the fertiliser has arrived at the Dry Port. According to him, from this first consignment, the AIC has distributed 800 tonnes of the fertilisers in Birgunj, while the rest have been sent to Biratnagar.
Despite the claim made by the Container Corporation of India (Concor), that of them providing an adequate number of dedicated railway rakes for Nepal-bound cargo, Nepali traders have been witnessing a shortage of rakes from the Indian seaport time and again.
During his visit to Nepal a few days ago, Concor’s Chairman and Managing Director V Kalyana Rama said the company would increase its number of railway trips by an additional 15 trips per month this year. He also said that in a month’s time, a total of 11 railway rakes would transport Nepal-bound cargo from the Vishakhapatnam Port. However, if recent cases of delay in shipment by Concor are to be taken into consideration, the company’s promises seem a little far-fetched.
The AIC is importing the urea produced by the Indian Potash Limited through a global tender process. The AIC is yet to receive 25,000 tonnes of chemical fertilisers, the remainder of the total consignment.
With the undergoing short supply, the AIC offices in Provinces 2 and 3 are currently facing a hard time managing the fertiliser supply out of its limited stock. The company is currently left with 50 tonnes in stock. Shrivastav said that the rest of the stuck fertiliser will make its way to the Dry Port soon. Meanwhile, a railway rake carrying diammonium phosphate (DAP), which was imported by the Salt Trading Corporation, also arrived at the dry port on Sunday. The Corporation Chief Amoj Lamichhane said they received half of the imported consignment, while the other half will arrive at the Dry Port in a few days. The government enterprise imports DAP from Indian Potash Limited for wheat cultivation. Shrivastav said they had an adequate stock of the DAP fertiliser. And according to him, at present, the AIC office in Birgunj has 7,500 tonnes of DAP in stock.
The demand for chemical fertilsers surges mainly during the paddy transplantation season, and continues until mid-September. The demand for urea in districts such as Rautahat, Sarlahi, Mahottari and Dhanusha among others goes up significantly during the farming season.