Government Steps Up Project Clearances

296 Projects of Rs 660,000 Crore Cleared by January End this Year

The Government has taken the bold step to set-up the Cabinet Committee on Investment and the Project Monitoring Group to speed up the implementation of projects in the country. As result, by the end of January, 2014, the way was cleared for completing 296 projects with an estimated project cost of Rs 660,000 crore. Stating this in the Interim Budget speech for the financial year 2014-15, the Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said the Government has given a big push to infrastructure and capacity addition in infrastructure industries.

In 2012-13 and in the nine months of the current financial year, the Government has added 29,350 megawatts of power capacity, 3928 kilometers of national highways, 39,144 kilometres of rural roads under PMGSY, 3343 kilometres of new railway track and 217.5 million tonnes of capacity per annum in the ports, he said. Besides, 19 oil and gas blocks were given out for exploration and 7 new airports are under construction. The Finance Minister added that the Government has also facilitated infrastructure Debt Funds to provide take-out finance for infrastructure projects and ease the pressure on the banking system.

Chidambaram informed that even after the economic slowdown the saving rate was 31.3 per cent in 2011-12 and 30.1 per cent in 2012-13. The corresponding investment rate was 35.5 percent and 34.8 per cent, respectively, indicating there was no steep decline in investment except in mining and manufacturing.