Chidambaram promises to resolve infrastructure bottlenecks

Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram today said a separate cell would be created in the ministry to take up with the departments the issues that were causing delay in the implementation of stalled projects and to see their resolution.
The minister flew in here from Bangalore this afternoon and reviewed the problems of 28 stalled projects involving a total investment of Rs 92,500 crore. In a two-hour-long meeting, Chidambaram interacted with a group of top executives and promoters of companies in the infrastructure sector, including GVK and Lanco, while asking them the reasons that were responsible for this delay. The list of stalled projects is obviously dominated by the energy sector with 16 power projects with investments ranging from Rs 6,000 crore to Rs 7,000 crore. The remaining 12 are the road projects with a size of Rs 1000 crore to Rs 3,000 crore. Problems relating to natural gas allocation, conclusion of fuel supply agreements with Coal India Limited and conclusion of power purchase agreements with the respective state power utilities were cited as the major bottlenecks in the power sector by the developers. For the road projects, the issue of land acquisition was cited as the single biggest reason for the delay in execution.

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