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In an exclusive interview to INFRASTRUCTURE TODAY, Debjani Chakrabarti, Director Highways, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (MoRTH) elucidates some of the key funding strategies being utilised by India as a part of the country's ambitious Rs 7 trillion roads building programme.
Over the last few years, the Government of India has rightly refocused attention on the shipping and logistics sector, and has recognised it as a key contributor to the development of the country.
The Union Budget of 2017-18 has laid a 25 per cent increase in allocations for infrastructure over last year. There has also been a renewed focus on transportation, development of port infrastructure and its automation.
The total length of operational metro projects in India presently stands at about 440 km and is growing. Cities like Bengaluru, Chennai, Gurugram, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Lucknow and the Delhi National Capital Region (NCR) where they are already operational, are simultaneously adding on to their existing route networks.
This Union Budget came against the backdrop of a raft of reforms, economic slowdown and fiscal stress. While the Budget proposals will incrementally contribute to economic expansion with its de facto elements of stimulus, the pace of growth will largely be due to factors outside the Budget.
The Union Budget for FY2018 has maintained focus on meeting the Housing for All agenda by 2022. The allocation is marginally lower than the last fiscal.
Improved rural incomes, higher rural credit and increased allocation for the rural, agricultural and allied sectors are likely to boost rural demand, including the requirement for rural housing.
With an outlay of Rs 1,773 for the year 2017û18, the government has set the ball rolling for the port sector. To promote port-led development in India, Rs 600 crore has already been allocated for the Sagarmala Programme.