New Delhi, Sep 2:
The government on Wednesday said it has already approved nine public private partnership (PPP) projects to increase investments in road infrastructure.
Information on the new PPP projects was announced by union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari while addressing the 55th SIAM (Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers) annual convention being held here.
“Infrastructure is the first step to improve and increase road network,” Gadkari said.
The minister further announced that the government is planning to create a new “department of transport.”
Gadkari elaborated that the new department will be headed by a secretary level official.
“The new department will have experts which will be abreast with the technical knowledge so that technical regulations can be designed better. This body will come into existence once the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office) approves it,” Gadkari said.
Other key government officials also participated in the event.
The Commerce and Industry Ministry’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Secretary Amitabh Kant said that auto industry would be a key growth driver for the country.
“If India has to grow at the rate of 7-8 percent, then the automotive and auto component industry have to be the key driver of this growth, not only in case of manufacturing but also innovation and frugal engineering,” Kant said.
Kant also stressed upon the importance of connected cars and shared mobility, like services of Ola, Uber which are driven by technology.
Heavy industries and Public Enterprises’ Secretary R.S Katoch said that while there have been high level concerns on emission norms of late, we have tried to put forth the case of the industry in the best possible way.
“There are a lot of misconceptions which we believe can be addressed with proper studies on the subject matter,” Katoch said.
SIAM President Vikram Kirloskar, who is also the vice chairman of Toyota Kirloskar Motor said that the last three years have been challenging for Indian automotive industry.
“However, the conditions have improved significantly over the past fiscal.”
He added that the industry is hopeful that GST (goods and services tax) will soon be implemented. (IANS)