The Minister of Road Transport and Highways and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Shri Nitin Gadkari expressed confidence that due to the thrust on the road infrastructure given by the Government, there will be a huge push for demand, providing a solid foundation for the sustainable and inclusive growth and above all creating job opportunities for millions of people of the country.
Addressing the CII’s National Conference on “Road Infrastructure – Creating Demand: Stimulating Growth” today, Shri Gadkaritalked about critical role played by road infrastructure in the economic growth of the country. He said that around 64.5% of the goods and nearly 90% of passenger traffic use road network to commute. He said that the road infrastructure has a direct and indirect effect on sustainability of growth and overall development of country.
Mentioning the National Infrastructure Pipeline, a first of its kind initiative to provide world-class infrastructure across the country, the Minister said that it has been expanded to cover more than 7,300 projects with a revised investment of Rs.111 lakh crore by the year 2025. He said that projects worth Rs.44 lakh crore, that is 40%, are under implementation and projects worth Rs.34 lakh crore, that is 30%, are at the conceptualisation stage and projects worth Rs.22 lakh crore, that is 20%, are under development.
The Minister also informed the gathering that this year, the Government has increased year-on-year infrastructure CapExby 34% to Rs. 5.54 lakh crore.
Talking about the business-friendly initiatives of the Road Transport and Highways Ministry, Shri Gadkari said that the requirement of EMD (Earnest Money Deposit) has been removed forbidding of new tenders to enable more industry players to participate in highway construction. Mentioning another path-breaking initiative undertaken by the Government, the Minister said that the Ministry, through NHAI, is planning to raise Rs one lakh crore through monetisation of highway under Toll Operate Transport mode in next five years.
The Minister said that in order to achieve the GDP of five trillion US dollars by year 2024-25, India needs to spend about 1.4 trillion dollars.
The Minister stressed on the need to move towards public transport on electricity and exhorted the industry to come forward in this direction.
The Minister also called upon the manufacturing sector of the country to increase its share in the country’s GDP from present 22-24% to 35-40%.