IRFC could fund bullet train project extension
Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC), the finance arm of the Indian Railways, is in talks with the National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd (NHSRCL) to finance the extended portion of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail Project.
To further expand its funding purview, IRFC will now look to finance private players having operational linkage with the Indian Railways.
IRFC said its memorandum of articles permits it to finance any sector which has forward or backward linkage with Indian Railways including ports and logistics for connectivity.
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There are talks on certain parts of the railways being considered for privatisation, including high-speed trains on certain routes. With an investment of about Rs 30,000 crore private players will procure their own rolling stock and run on these routes. Some of these have also approached IRFC for financing the rolling stock because of the low-cost funding provided by the financing arm.
The Government of India has remained the largest client for IRFC and will remain so at least for next 8-10 years because of the execution of the National Rail Plan, under which the government aims to spend Rs 10 lakh crore to augment rail capacities and improve the infrastructure around it.
IRFC added that funding of projects might be done in some sectors depending on the viability of the projects.
Image:Under the National Rail Plan, the government aims to spend Rs 10 lakh crore in the next 8-10 years