NHAI identifies projects worth Rs 8 trillion to be awarded in the next three years
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has reportedly, mapped out a pipeline of projects that will be awarded in the span of the coming three years. The identified projects are estimated to be worth Rs 8 trillion. The move comes at a time when the Finance Ministry had announced its decision in September to create a task force in order to push investments of Rs 100 trillion in the infrastructure sector. The government is extensively boosting investment in various sectors to achieve its ambitious goal of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy in the next five years. As reported, the agency has created a pipeline which it will present to the committee set up the Finance Ministry. The recommendations will then be further assessed in tune with the government’s plan. The projects to be put forward to the committee include a major chunk from Bharatmala Phase-1 as well as other strategic ventures. The land acquisition process is already being organised by NHAI.The committee, led by the Department of Economic Affairs’ secretary, will release the report for upcoming projects for FY19 by the end of October, while a report for projects in the pipeline for FY21-25 will be submitted by the end of December. Additionally, the appraisal for the identified projects is being done by the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways. Given the hesitance felt by private investors towards the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) model, the projects are likely to be awarded under the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) mode. Reportedly, it is expected that given NHAI’s strong influence over the country’s infrastructure, following the bidding process, there will be an upward trend in the economy. However, in order to meet its project deadlines and to achieve successful completion, the government will have to streamline a continuous flow of investments – of which, private players will be a major part.