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SCI plans to invest Rs 6,500 cr to buy 34 vessels in 5 years

Our Bureau

New Delhi , Oct 17

SHIPPING Corporation of India (SCI) plans to invest about Rs 6,500 crore in about five years for acquiring 34 vessels.

"We have planned the investment for our massive vessel acquisition programme of 34 vessels. This includes our annual investment of Rs 1,293 crore for the current fiscal," Mr S. Hajara, Chairman and Managing Director, told Business Line.

Mr Hajara was in town to hand over a dividend cheque of Rs 67.86 crore to the Union Shipping Minister, Mr T.R. Baalu.

The amount was the final dividend of 30 per cent for 2004-05 against the Government's shareholding of 80.12 per cent in SCI.

With this, the company has now paid an aggregate dividend of 70 per cent amounting to Rs 158 crore to the Government for 2004-05; it had already paid an interim dividend of Rs 90.47 crore.

The corporation would focus on sectors such as crude products, LNG transportation, and bulk carriers, with special emphasis on offshore segment.

To increase its presence in offshore oil segments, Mr Hajara said the company could consider joint ventures with foreign shipping companies.

SCI recorded net profit of Rs 1,420 crore in 2004-05, the highest since its inception. It owns a fleet of 84 ships, with 49,34,847 dwt, according to a statement.

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