Having removed bottlenecks in their path, the government is soon to launch infrastructure projects worth Rs.200,000 crore ($32.9 billion), Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadari said Friday."We have cleared bottlenecks. Now this year we will launch projects worth Rs.2 lakh crore," Gadkari said, addressing the annual convention here of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).This amount will be invested in projects during the rest of the year, while infratsructure investment worth Rs.150,000 crore, held up earler by regulatory hurdles, have already been cleared, Gadkari said.
"It is easy to construct express highways but difficult to get environment clearance. However, we are removing hurdles. We have cleared projects worth Rs.1.5 lakh crore," he added."We are fast-tracking the decision making and weeding out corruption and red-tapism from government functioning besides introducing innovation," the minister said.There was no shortage of funds for projects and the ministry could mobilise more through securitisation of toll revenues of around Rs.180,000 crore in 15 years, besides raising funds through infrastructure bonds worth Rs.10,000 crore, Gadkari said.
He said the ministry is exploring the construction of 200,000 km of roads, including highways, through the public-private-partnership (PPP) mode.Gadkari also said the draft for the new Motor Vehicles Act, to be called the Road Transport Act and expected to be passed in the winter session of parliament, will be launched on the ministry's website by Saturday, inviting suggestions from stakeholders."The present Motor Vehicles Act has turned obsolete and the new draft has been prepared incorporating the best practises in six advanced nations - US, Japan, Germany, UK, Singapore and Australia," he said.