New Delhi, Aug 15: Government will kick-start a number of new infrastructure projects including 8 new airports and two new sea-ports in the coming months to boost sluggish economic growth, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said.
With economic growth slowing to a decade low of 5 per cent, the Congress-led UPA government has further opened the economy to foreign direct investment and now wants to use investments for returning to high growth targetory.
"We will start work on a number of new infrastructure projects in the coming months. This includes 2 new ports, 8 new airports, new industrial corridors and rail projects," Singh said in his address to the Nation from the ramparts of Red Fort on the occasion of 67th Independence Day.
Listing out steps taken to boost infrastructure in the last nine years, he said about 2 lakh kilometer of new roads have been constructed for connecting villages under Pradhan Mantri Gramin Sadak Yojna.
More than 37,000 km of new highways have been built to facilitate travel and trade ,while more than 40 airports have been built or upgraded.
"Our growth will accelerate, new employment opportunities will be generated and there will be improvement in the infrastructure sector," he said.
Stating that inadequate supply of coal had affected electricity generation, he said, "this has been resolved to a large extent."
Singh said the government has eased investment caps in several sectors and simplified procedures to boost flow of foreign direct investment.
Last month, the limit on foreign holdings in telecom was raised from 74 per cent to 100 per cent while restrictions in a dozen other sectors from insurance to tea plantations were eased or abolished.