Encouraged with the good show in highways building during the just-concluded fiscal, the Roads Ministry has increased the target for awarding projects by 2.5 times to 25,000 km for the ongoing fiscal.
The construction target has also been increased 2.5 times to 16,000 km for the fiscal, translating into building over 40 km of highways a day.
Last year, the Road Transport and Highways Ministry had awarded a record 10,000 km of projects and constructed 6,000 km of highways, which is 36 per cent higher than the preceding fiscal.
“Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has fixed 2.5 times increase in the target for award and construction of National Highways for the year 2016-17,” a statement from the ministry said.
Encouraged by the good performance of his ministry in 2015-16, he expressed confidence that the pace of development that was established last year will result in even better outcome during the current year, it said.
“The minister has set a target of 25,000 km of National Highways to be awarded in 2016-17 as against the 10,000 km awarded in 2015-16. The construction target has been set at 15,000 km as against the 6,000 km constructed last year,” the statement said.
Of the total length of National Highways targeted for award, 15,000 km would fall under the target of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and 10,000 km under the target of the Ministry and National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL).
NHAI’s target for construction has been fixed at 8,000 km while for the Ministry and NHIDCL, the target is 7,000 km.
“The year 2015-16 has been one of very positive outcomes for the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways. Works on a length of more than 10,000 km were awarded for the very first time. The completion of construction of 6,000 km marked a year-over-year increase of nearly 36 per cent,” the ministry said.
The speeding up of road projects has been made possible due to several policy interventions which include the ministry being empowered to decide mode of delivery, increased threshold for project approval, enhanced inter-ministerial coordination, Exit Policy and promoting innovative project implementation models like Hybrid Annuity Model.
Other steps included amendments to the Model Concession Agreement for BOT projects, segregation of Civil Cost from Capital Cost for NH projects for appraisal and approval, rationalised compensation to concessionaires for languishing NH projects in BOT mode for delays not attributable to them.