IRB Infra to sign Zojila pass tunnel concession agreement by March

Mumbai, Feb 17 (IANS) IRB Infrastructure Developers on Wednesday said it expects to sign the concession agreement for the Rs.10,500 crore Zojila Pass Tunnel in Jammu and Kashmir by March.

“We will be signing the concession agreement for the project by March and in the next six months, we hope to complete the financial closure,” said IRB Infrastructure Developers chairman Virendra Mhaiskar at the Make in India Week here.

IRB Infrastructure Developers won the contract from the ministry of road transport and highways for construction, operation and maintenance of the Zojila Pass tunnel.

The project includes building approaches on National Highway-1 on design, build, finance, operate and transfer (annuity) basis.

Scheduled to be completed in seven years with a concession period of 22 years, the project involves constructing a 14.08 km tunnel with a 10.8 km approach road with three vertical ventilation shafts, an avalanche protection mechanism and a 700-metre snow gallery.

Mhaiskar highlighted that the project has socio-economic and strategic importance as it will provide the much needed all-weather connectivity between Ladakh and the rest of Jammu and Kashmir.

Till the end of the concession period, IRB Infrastructure Developers will receive biannual annuity of Rs.981 crore from the government after the start of the project commissioning.

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