100 highway projects planned on PPP mode next year: Gadkari

New Delhi, Oct 27 (IANS) The government plans to launch 100 highway projects next year through the public-private partnership (PPP mode), union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Tuesday.

“The government will award 100 projects on PPP mode next year. Under the hybrid model, we will give you on platter projects with land acquisition and environment clearances,” he said at the India PPP summit here organised by industry chamber FICCI.

“Forty percent cost will be borne by us while 60 percent will be funded by you. Of the 60 percent, banks will provide 30 percent of the requirement,” he said.

Noting that 95 percent of problems pertaining to PPP projects had been addressed, Gadkari asked investors not to worry and just “change their perception about PPP” as in the present hybrid model, even toll collection will be done by the government.

“Ninety-five percent of road sector problems have been solved. Name me one road project that is lying stalled,” he told the gathering.

“All problems pertaining to the mode have been addressed and this year seven projects worth Rs.11,500 crore have already been awarded in contrast to nil last year,” the minister said.

Gadkari also said the Delhi-Jaipur Highway project will be completed by December as 85 percent of it is completed, while problems related to Delhi-Haridwar and Ranchi-Jamshedpur highways were being addressed.

The national highways length would be increased to 1.5 lakh km from 1 lakh km at present, he added.

Apart from the Buddhist tourist circuit, 1,000 km of highways will be constructed to link “char dhams” Hindu pilgrimage sites in the Himalayas, Gadkari said

“One percent of the highways construction cost will be set aside for plantation along the roads, which in turn would generate five lakh employment,” he said illustrating the ecological component of the government’s highways project.

The government also plans to build a number of expressways including Delhi-Mumbai, Mumbai-Nagpur, Delhi-Ludhiana and Bengaluru-Chennai.

Besides, all the 12 major ports, the Shipping Corp, the Dredging Corp and Cochin Shipyard together would post a profit of around Rs.6,000 crore this year, the minister said.

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