India to Set Up US$10 bn Infrastructure Fund

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Nov. 24 – In order to ensure that infrastructure projects in India are not stalled due to a lack of funds, the government has decided to set up a dedicated Rs. 50,000 crore (US$10 billion) infrastructure fund. The fund, according to the Economic Times is expected to be available for projects developed by both private and public-private joint ventures to build roads, airports, power plants or ports. Some of the infrastructure projects that are in the planning stage include 43 IT cities, developing roads in India's Northeast, and completing the US$90 billion industry corridor which will connect India's capital New Delhi with her commercial capital Mumbai.

India will need an investment of US$99 billion per annum over 2007-2012 in 10 major infrastructure segments to support its planned annual economic growth of nine percent, according to the World Investment Report (WIR) prepared by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad), the IANS reported.

The public sector is expected to provide 70 percent of the investment while the private sector will provide the other 30 percent. The energy sector requires the most investment US$30 billion (Rs.1.2 trillion) per year. The next highest investment need is in roads at US$15.2 (Rs.608 billion) on average per year followed by the telecommunications sector which needs US$13.0 billion (Rs.520 billion) investment a year. Ports need US$3.6 billion investment a year. The report also says railways need US$12.6 billion and airports require US$1.6 billion a year.