Key Rail Assets To Attract Over Rs 1.50 Lakh Crore Investment From Private Players

by Arun Kumar Das - Oct 3, 2021 12:16 PM +05:30 IST
Key Rail Assets To Attract Over Rs 1.50 Lakh Crore Investment From Private PlayersBlueprint for the New Delhi Railway Station with 3-proposed levels.
Snapshot
  • Of the Rs 6 lakh crore, the NMP sees a potential asset monetisation of Rs 1,52,496 crore for Indian Railways.

    This is around 26 per cent of the total NMP plan for the next 4 years and less only to roadways which is seen at Rs 1,60,200 crore.

With the aim to raise over Rs 1.50 lakh crore from asset monetisation, Indian Railways has stepped up efforts to attract private investment in the station redevelopment, passenger train operation and dedicated freight corridors segments among others in a big way.

According to the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) initiated by NITI Aayog, the key rail assets identified for monetisation include 400 railway stations, 90 passenger trains, one route of 1,400 km railway track, 741 km of Konkan railway, 15 railway stadiums and selected railway colonies, 265 railway owned goods-sheds and four hill railways.

First announced in the Union Budget 2021-22 speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said the ownership of the assets will remain with the government.

Of the Rs 6 lakh crore, the NMP sees a potential asset monetisation of Rs 1,52,496 crore for Indian Railways. This is around 26 per cent of the total NMP plan for the next 4 years and less only to roadways which is seen at Rs 1,60,200 crore.

Charting out a four-year plan, it envisages to earn Rs 17,810 crore in FY22, Rs 57,222 crore in FY23, Rs 44,907 crore in FY24 and Rs 32,557 crore in FY25 from monetisation of railway assets.

The Railways aims to earn maximum revenue from the station redevelopment programme. Railways has initiated the railway stations redevelopment programme with world class passenger amenities and to make them hubs of economic activities.

According to the plan indicated by NITI Aayog, the target is Rs 76,250 crore from station redevelopment. Indian Railways assets are generally located in prime locations, having high commercial value.

However, they are under-utilised. The New Delhi Railway Station Redevelopment programme is one such project, which will generate substantial employment and transform the station into a world-class facility.

The total plan envisages an expenditure of Rs 17,000 crore in FY 22, Rs 29,325 crore in FY 23, Rs 17,575 crore in FY24 and Rs 12,350 crore in FY25.

Different stations will have varied level of revenue potential. Capital investment for each station would need to be meticulously derived, considering the project feasibility and maximum pay-outs to the government.

While the earnings from 265 goods sheds are pegged at Rs 5,565 crore, the monetisation of the 1,400-km-long OHE track is expected to fetch Rs 17,770 crore.

The monetisation plan also involves hill railways and Konkan railways. While all four hill railways are expected to raise Rs 630 crore, the 741 km long Konkan Railways is expected to fetch Rs 7,281 crore.

The flagship project, DFC, which is currently under construction, is slated to fetch Rs 20,178 crore from the monetisation of 674 km route in the financial years of 2024-25 and 2025-26.

From railway colonies' redevelopment, the monetisation is pegged at Rs 2,250 crore.

In NMP, private players are expected to invest large capital in the existing public assets to eventually realise revenues.

With Indian Railways' focus on augmenting infrastructure to facilitate freight and passenger movement, significant investments will be needed to address capacity constraints, states the NMP.

With that in mind, the NMP outlines asset monetisation plans for railway stations, passenger trains, hill railways, goods sheds, Dedicated Freight Corridors and track infrastructure among others.

Arun Kumar Das is a senior journalist covering railways. He can be contacted at akdas2005@gmail.com.


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