To expedite implementation of infrastructure projects across the country, Infrastructure Finance Secretariat (IFS) established under the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance in partnership with Dept. of Urban Development, Government of Maharashtra, conducted a focused workshop on infrastructure with State Governments of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh on 22nd August 2022 at Trident Hotel, Nariman Point, Mumbai.
This is the first workshop in a series of workshops planned with State Government and Union Territories with key infrastructure ministries, aimed to understand ground issues faced by project authorities in undertaking large infrastructure projects.
Under the workshop presentations were made by senior officials from key infrastructure union ministries like Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, Ministry of Roads, Transport, and Highways, Ministry of Power, Department of Promotion for Industry, and Internal Trade and their implementing agencies such as National Highways Authority of India, National Highways (NHAI) and Infrastructure Development Ltd. (NHIDCL), Central Transmission Utility of India Ltd (CTUIL).
The workshop saw participation from over 50 senior officials from the State Governments of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh. Some of the key participants from the State Governments included the Additional Chief Secretary of the State Govt. of Karnataka, Secretary (Finance) of the State Govt. of Andhra Pradesh, Secretary (Finance) and Secretary (Planning) of State Govt. of Gujarat, Principal Secretary (Urban Development) of State Govt. of Maharashtra, Municipal Commissioners of major urban centres in the states.
The forum provided an opportunity to State officials to interact with officials from key infrastructure ministries and their implementing agencies, representatives from National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF), International Finance Corporation (IFC) etc. and bring forward issues faced by them in executing infrastructure projects and areas for support required in their resolution.
The workshop witnessed panel discussions on measures to enhance urban financing options including municipal bonds and initiatives taken by states to boost financing and focused discussions on need for State Government specific PPP policies and their readiness for the same. The Department of Economic Affairs also informed the State Governments on the mechanism to utilize the newly empaneled Transaction Advisors along with the mechanism of availing the financial support under the funds & schemes for financial support to PPP projects.
There was a special session on mechanisms to augment municipal financing including ways to energise the municipal bond market. It was followed by a thematic session on need for a state PPP policy to usher in private investment in infrastructure. The workshop also saw active participation from GoI ministries of Roads and Highways, Power and Housing Affairs. DPIIT, GoI along with BISAG-N (nodal agency for implementing PM GatiShakti) made a presentation regarding the need and mechanism for spatial integrating of state projects on the GatiShakti portal. States put forward their key bottlenecks and issues that were noted by the concerned Ministry.
Overall, the workshop brought together an opportunity to learn from the best practices of the participating states.