August 29, 2012 1:15:29 am
To give an impetus to big infrastructure projects that are in limbo,finance minister P Chidambaram has called a meeting of key infrastructure ministries next week.
The meeting,likely to be held on September 7,will seek to address problems faced by projects costing over Rs 1,000 crore. It is estimated that infrastructure projects amounting to Rs 4 lakh crore has been stuck in various stages of implementation.
Ministries,including aviation,power,telecommunications,roads and highways,shipping and railways are likely to attend the meeting. This meeting is a part of the investment-tracking system formed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to periodically review projects.
In July this year,the Prime Minister had also called a meeting to review the plans of infrastructure ministries and set new targets. After the review meeting by the Prime Minister,the road construction target of the road transport ministry and National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for this year was scaled up to 9,500 km from 8,800 km announced in this years Budget.
However,the ministry and NHAI could not repeat the performance of awarding projects covering 7,957 km in 2011-12,and have been able to award a little over 100 km of road projects in this fiscal. Around six projects by NHAI did not receive any bids.
The financial closure of many projects are also delayed because of funding issues. Land acquisition has been another hurdle in implementation of projects.
The slack in infrastructure projects is considered as a major contributing factor to the slowdown in economic growth.
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