NHAI to raise Rs.1 lakh crore
The Ministry Road Transport & Highways proposes to develop additional 60,000 km of National Highways in the next five years.
These include 2,500 km are Express Ways and Access Controlled Highways, 9,000 km Economic Corridors, 2,000 km for Coastal and Port Connectivity Highways and 2,000 km Border Road, Strategic Highways.
The Ministry also intends to improve connectivity for 100 tourist destinations and construct Bypasses for 45 towns and cities during the five years.
Expenditure has increased from Rs.33,745 crore in 2013-14 to Rs.137,354 crore in 2018-19, said the Ministry in a year-end review on 1 Jan 2020.
It has spent Rs.85,275 crore Jan-Nov 2019 including internal and external resources of National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).
NHAI intends to raise Rs.1 lakh crore through Toll-Operate-Transfer (TOT) Model of asset monetization in the next five years.
Finances are also likely to accrue from Securitization of Toll Revenues as well as the setting up of Infra Investment Trust (InvIT).
Other steps being taken by NHAI include financing new projects through National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) supported SPVs and Toll Operate Transfer (TOT) and Securitization of user fee receipts of NHs.
Nine TOT projects of 566 km has been awarded this Financial Year for a concession fee of Rs.5,011 crores against the reserve price of Rs.4,998.71 crore.
Further initiatives are being taken up to bid out more projects under TOT mode during this Financial Year.
NHAI project base would be expanded for monetization under TOT mode and for raising finance against toll receipts from identified Public Funded/Hybrid Annuity Model (HAM) projects through securitization.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved on 25 Nov 2019:
NHAI to monetize public funded NH projects which are operational and are collecting toll for at least one year after completion through TOT on a case to case basis;
NHAI is authorized to vary the Concession Period between 15 to 30 years depending on project features;
The detailed proposal for every TOT bundle, including the proposed project stretches; estimated concession value & proposed concession period shall be approved by NHAI Board (Authority);
NHAI is allowed to raise long term finance from banks by securitizing the user fee receipts from fee plazas as alternate mode of asset monetization;
Securitization would offer an alternative mode for raising finance against toll receipts from identified Public Funded/HAM projects. Securitization as a model entails the generation of upfront funds against the future cash flows generated by select assets.
Infrastructure Investment Trusts
In order to enhance NHAI’s resource mobilization, the Cabinet has approved on 13 Dec 2019:
NHAI is authorized to set up Infrastructure Investment Trust(s), as per InvIT Guidelines issued by Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), to monetize completed National Highways that have a toll collection track record of at least one year for which NHAI reserves the right to levy toll on the identified highway;
NHAI is authorized to incorporate SPV(s) which are essential and integral part of the entire InvIT structure;
NHAI is authorized to set up its first InvIT as per the structure approved by NHAI Board and to incorporate two SPVs which are essential and integral part of the InvIT structure;
An SPV to hold all identified public funded projects to be placed in an InvIT;
An SPV to act as an Investment Manager in the proposed InvIT;
NHAI is authorized to create a reserve fund from the sums received from InvIT, which shall be kept in a separate account for repayment of debt.
Progress of Major Programmes and Landmark Projects
Work on major bridge across Sharavathi backwaters, approaches between Ambargodu and Kalasvali in Karnataka and 16 packages of Trans Rajasthan Highways project have been awarded.
A three-lane underpass was inaugurated at Parade Road junction near Manekshaw Centre on NH 8 in New Delhi on 12 July 2019.
Dasna-Hapur section of Delhi-Meerut Expressway (package-3) in Uttar Pradesh’s Pilakhuwa was inaugurated on 30 September 2019.
The completion of this section is expected to further help in decongesting the National Capital Region, bring down pollution levels and reduce travel time significantly.
The integrated bus ports in Cuttack (Odisha) and in Baddi (Himachal Pradesh) have been approved and the DPRs thereon are under progress.
The Ministry has launched National Electronic Toll Collection (NETC) program which provides for collection of user fee through FASTags based on RFID technology.
Ministry is trying to bring inter-operability of the FASTags with the State Governments so that a single FASTag can be used both at State Highways Toll Plaza and National Highways Toll Plaza.
A NHAI Prepaid Wallet was also launched giving customers the choice of not linking their FASTag to their bank accounts and includes the feature of UPI recharge. fiinews.com