Government seeks foreign investment in road building

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New Delhi, July 7(ANI): Union Transport Minister Kamal Nath said on Tuesday that the government wants foreign investors to fund as much as half of the 20 billion dollars, which it has earmarked for road building in a year.

Kamal Nath said he has plans to meet with investors from Europe, the United States and Asia, including Hong Kong and Singapore, in the next two or three months to discuss which financing platforms would be most effective.

"I think in the next one year, the investment is close to 10 billion dollars from overseas. That's the target what I am saying. We must get 10 billion dollars in the next one year in the investment opportunities," Kamal Nath said.

India's ambitious highway programmes has hit a speed bump as wary investors shy away from funding, but critics say the problem lies deeper and that the process of offering and bidding for highway upgrades needs review.

Kamal Nath said the government was aware of the problems and was engaging with the state governments to speed up road building across the country.

Meanwhile, he also said it was examining the issue of appropriate compensation for land acquisition.

"Roads need money, but-more important than money-roads need land. While additional outlay has been proposed, we have to match this with commensurate land acquisition to be able to use the money," Nath said. (ANI)

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