Imported sand from Malaysia selling briskly in Tamil Nadu
River sand imported by the state government from Malaysia is selling briskly at the Ennore Port, with 30% of the stock being sold in two weeks. In the wake of rising demand for the construction material, the government has placed an order for a second consignment from the Southeast Asian nation.
Officials at the Kamarajar Port at Ennore said about 15,000 tonnes of river sand had been sold. The sand has been stocked at the port premises where lorry operators who have made bookings arrive to take the loads.
“About 50,000 tonnes of sand have been imported from Malaysia. The number of trucks transporting sand from the port has increased in the last three days,” a port official said.
While 195 lorries carried nearly 460 units of sand on October 19, 182 trucks ferried sand out of the port. On an average, about 2,000 to 2,500 tonnes of sand are being sold per day. “If the sale continues at the same pace, the sand will get exhausted in the next 20 days,” the port official added.
The Public Works Department (PWD) has fixed a price of Rs 10,350 per unit of imported sand weighing 4.5 tonnes.
Apart from sand lorry owners, members of the public can also purchase sand through the web portal of the PWD’s sand operation wing.
Tamil Nadu State Sand Lorry Owner’s Federation S Yuvaraj said the market for river sand sourced from abroad is growing in the city. “There is a strong demand for such sand. The waiting period for getting the imported river sand is just one day,” he said. While the state government’s first consignment of imported sand arrived at the Ennore Port on September 23, the distribution was kick-started on October 8.
PWD officials said around 225 to 275 bookings are made every day to buy the imported sand. “The order for the next consignment of river sand has been made,” a senior PWD official told TOI, adding that it was expected to arrive at the port from Malaysia in the next two to three weeks.