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Welcome focus on core competence An enemy’s enemy is a friend Nuclear power at the nucleus PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Russi Mody – a tribute Breaththrough in malaria control Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik IAS invades NDDB... Telangana in top gear… Preserving for the future West Bengal: mindless malignancy Intellectual of rare qualities This scant respect for Law A more liberated TN… Engineering seats go abegging Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Delhi Chalo... Mu Sigma – is no more IPL type auction for VCs? Small units prefers to remain small... Discoms deserve better… Airlines in India: cost and space How Air-India loses customs... Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Streamlining mandatory third party cover Sweet news for TN sugar mills Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! 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WTO Meet: resolved to meet again A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Things happen by accident and not by design... Cutting the nose to spite the face PC’s preference for professionals New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Wise Presidents Kinetic Karnataka Music happens Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Modi storms Silicon Valley A yen for wastage… Delhi is distant Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami Of course, Gujarat is vibrant No engine for this car Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria The nuclear option Lalu’s envy, India’s pride TELANGANA at last…BUT For whom the MIDS bell tolls? He continues the focus on social amelioration Welcome GST Strengthen the base... MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways IPL - no surprise this scam Revive development banks... Plummeting profits of PSBs Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God...
 
Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt

At the TN Global Investors Meet dozens of experts discussed in parallel sessions presided over by the state ministers/senior civil servants.

A media person had to contend with a major problem: since these were conducted in parallel, one had to hop from one hall to another to listen selectively  few specialists of one’s choice. The second problem related to the organiser’s presenting too many speakers, each given just five to ten minutes,  that left little time for interactions. One looks forward to the consolidation of the presentations in a book form.

I sat through the session on Enabling Mega Infrastructure projects. Planning & Development Secretary, S Krishnan, made a lucid presentation on the problems encountered by large Infrastructure projects. He threw light on the need for more thorough preparation of funding the projects adequately, as also to anticipate contingencies and developments that would demand higher volume of funding. These will have implications on the viability of the project and the repayment schedules of loans. Krishnan suggested providing for adequate viability gap funding.

The present crisis suffered by banks and other lenders has risen due to the failure on this score. The consequent reluctance of these financial institutions to fund infrastructure projects received attention in this session.

S B Nayar, CMD, India Infrastructure Finance Co Ltd. outlined several measures such as sale and lease back of assets and securitisation. Lack of attention to such details resulted in hundreds of vital projects announced by the UPA I and UPA II governments remaining non-starters. The ultra mega power project concept announced at the beginning of the UPA I regime which held great promise is a case in point. At the closing years of UPA II, Finance Minister P Chidambaram frequently mentioned of projects valued at over Rs 700,000 crore getting stuck for various reasons.

K Venkatesh, MD, L&T Infrastructure Development Projects, pointed to yet another problem: the difficulty of concessionaries to realise fully the promise of toll collections in many of the BOT projects. Venkatesh  also referred to two other issues, of an effective disputes resolution mechanism and the difficulty of settlement of dues. The judicial system and mechanism for settlement outside the traditional legal system both need to be tuned up to deliver quick decisions.

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