The State government has formally agreed to give a 27-km stretch of the coastline at Nakkapalli in Visakhapatnam district for setting up an Alternative Operating Base (AOB) of the Indian Navy.
Detailed deliberations have already been held in this regard with top naval officials by the AP Maritime Board and other departments concerned.
The Indian Navy had sought notification for a 97-km area as the limits of the proposed Rambilli port in order to facilitate the establishment of the AOB.
Official sources said that the Visakhapatnam-based Eastern Naval Command (ENC) had requested the State government to notify the Rambilli port limits in 2016, and wide-ranging consultations had since been held with senior officials of the Navy, including its chief, recently.
The AOB is designed to support a fleet of eight to 12 nuclear-powered ballistic missile vessels and submarines to be built for the Navy.
Besides, it has been planned by the Navy to set up ‘submarine pens’ (bunkers that help in hiding the submarines from spy satellites and protecting them from air attacks) in the AOB.
The relevant files have been circulated among the State government departments.
The AOB is given top priority by the State government, along with the three ports mooted at Ramayapatnam, Machilipatnam and Bhavanapadu at estimated cost of ₹10,000 crore.
In another significant development, officials are contemplating setting up ship recycling units, for which the suitability of the coast in Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, East Godavari and Prakasam districts is being explored. Five ships were broken at Kakinada way back in 1995-96.