WB’s proposed state highways authority to woo pvt investment

December 26, 2011

West Bengal’s proposed state highways authority will work to attract private investment in road infrastructure development, State Finance Minister Amit Mitra has said.

“With the state highways authority, West Bengal can undertake road projects on a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) basis,” Mitra told PTI.

The Mamata Banerjee-led government has proposed to create infrastructure through the PPP model, officials said.

A decision to set up a highways authority similar to the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is a step toward achieving goals in the road sector, sources said.

Mitra said, “The initial corpus for the authority has not yet been finalised and could be known when the proposal comes to the Finance Department.”

At present, the Public Works Department controls and maintains highways in the state. The state highway authority is likely to take over this role once it comes into place, officials said.

West Bengal has a total road network covering 92,023 km, of which National Highways comprise 2,578 km and state highways cover 2,393 km.

States like Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh have already set up a state highways authority to improve their road infrastructure.

Source: business-standard.com

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