The Korea Rural Community Corporation is expected to sign a design service contract with the Government of Gujarat in India next month.
The contract worth 40 billion won is to build a sea wall for the Kalpasar Project in order to deal with the chronic shortage of water in the hinterlands of Mumbai. The breakwater construction alone is estimated to cost 12 trillion won and the size of the project can be expanded to US$20 billion when the transportation infrastructure, power plants and the like to be housed in the reclaimed land are taken into account.
The sea wall is to have a length of 30 kilometers, slightly shorter than the world’s longest Saemangeum Seawall in Korea. Still, the freshwater lake to be surrounded by the sea wall is expected to have a storage capacity of 10 billion tons, about 28 times that of the Saemangeum Seawall. The Government of Gujarat is planning to utilize the freshwater lake for potable, agricultural and industrial water supply while turning the region into an industrial complex. 12-lane roads and solar and wind power plants are scheduled to be built there.
“At present, only the Netherlands and South Korea have any experience of large-scale sea wall construction, and thus a lot of opportunities will be given to South Korean enterprises,” an executive at the corporation mentioned, continuing, “They need to form consortiums by section as the scale of the project is huge.” He added, “The corporation is planning to build similar sea walls in Indonesia, Myanmar, etc.”
It is said that the contract has to do with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the Saemangeum Seawall back in 2007, when he looked around the sea wall in South Korea as the Governor of Gujarat and was impressed to the point of pondering upon a similar one in India. At that time, however, he failed to realize his thoughts due to the lack of financial resources. Last year, he visited South Korea again and discussed his plan with South Korean President Park Geun-hye.