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Monday, 12 May 2014
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Project Monitoring Group fast tracks Rs 5.2 lakh crore investment

The Project Monitoring Group, which was set up under the Cabinet Secretariat in June 2013 to facilitate clearance of mega projects, was successful in clearing around 153 mega projects with an investment of around 5.2 lakh crore. Further, the PMG was also successful in ensuring that fuel supply agreements have been signed between power firms and coal companies for about 70,000 MW. This has made several state governments to follow suit and set up similar monitoring group at state levels.


Projects Monitor in Group_ProjectsToday


The PMG received 437 project proposals, each worth Rs 1,000 crore or above, involving a total investment of close to Rs 20 lakh crore. These projects in the power, highways, port and railways sectors were struck at initial stages for more than one year due to delays in getting environment clearances, land acquisitions, signing fuel supply agreements, etc.


Some of the notable projects which were fast tracked by the PMG include a Rs 12,000 crore new terminal building at Mumbai Airport; Phase-III of Adani Power’s Rs 9,900 crore Mundra project; a Rs 7,000 crore Utkal alumina refinery project of Hindalco in Odisha; and a Rs 4,255 crore Lumding-Silchar gauge conversion railway project aiming to provide seamless connectivity to lower Assam and Tripura, Mizoram and Manipur with the rest of India.


The 500 MW Mejia thermal power project worth Rs 2,500 crore and 600 MW Raghunathpur TPP DBC worth Rs 3,000 crore were also revived by the PMG. Both were stuck due to non-availability of coal, and have now signed coal supply agreements with Coal India.


The Project Monitoring Group facilitates clearance of projects by bringing all ministries and departments concerned onto the same platform. Cabinet Secretariat has set up an 'Online CCI Projects Tracking System' portal for tracking projects of over Rs 1,000 crore. Through this web platform, both, the government and private investors can provide information and track details of pending projects and point out where the project is stuck. This project information is first accessed by the ministry or department concerned, which verifies it and then forwards it to the PMG for action. The PMG then brings together all ministries involved to sort out the problem.The states are being encouraged to adopt the same software to keep addressing the impediments and bottlenecks faced by small projects in a number of areas including land acquisition and multiple clearances to start the projects, and fast track the process.


The states that have approached the Centre for replicating the PMG model include Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. States are jumping into the fray as there are several projects smaller in size that are also stuck and might get revived with timely help from state ministries and departments. Thus, the state-based PMGs will facilitate clearance of projects with investments under Rs 1,000 crore.


The Bihar government has stated that the State’s PMG will oversee projects of over Rs 150 crore. The Rajasthan government has already set up a Central Sector Projects Coordination Committee to sort out bottlenecks for timely implementation of Central sector projects. Now, it is likely to be extended to private sector projects too.


The Gujarat government is also planning to set up its own project monitoring group on the lines of the monitoring group set up by the Centre. The PMG has approved seven mega projects from Gujarat.


The Uttar Pradesh government has decided to set up a self-financed PMG to facilitate clearances for infrastructure projects. The state PMG is expected to fast track the six-laning of Varanasi-Aurangabad highway, an inter-state HPCL pipeline, Prayagraj Power Generation Project, etc.


Madhya Pradesh already has a single-window clearance system in place for infrastructure projects that it wants to integrate with the activities of the PMG.


The Odisha government has set the ball rolling for online review of industrial and infrastructure projects with investments in the range of Rs 50-1,000 crore. The management of the online project monitoring system is to be vested with the industries department and Industrial Promotion & Investment Corporation of Odisha (IPICOL).


Odisha has been a major beneficiary of the Centre’s PMG with 72 mega projects in the state going under the Group’s scanner, including the smelter plant of Aditya Aluminium, proposed expansion of Vedanta Aluminum’s Lanjigarh refinery, Paradip refinery and Paradip-Ranchi-Raipur pipeline of Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL) and rail link projects like Paradip-Haridaspur, Talcher-Bimlagarh and Angul-Sukinda.


PMG's vision is to make all information available on the web, thereby creating transparency through IT-related applications. It is expected that with state governments setting up their own project monitoring systems, the cash flowing into the held-up projects will relieve promoters of financial pressure, encourage fresh investments and also revive the demand for machinery and equipment, thus ultimately boosting investor’s confidence.


Manufacturing Sector Developments


  • BHEL has received approval from the Maharashtra Cabinet for its 240 MW solar photovoltaic cells manufacturing unit at Sakoli, in Bhandara district
  • Pipavav Defence & Offshore Engineering is planning to set up a main system integration facility for manufacturing missiles and torpedoes in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
  • Piramal Enterprises is setting up a pharmaceutical unit at Mahad in Raigarh district of Maharashtra
  • Dabur India has earmarked an investment of Rs 350 crore for its capacity expansion plan for FY15
  • Suzlon Wind Energy Corporation has bagged an order worth Rs 720 crore for supplying wind turbines
  • Essar Steel Plate Mills has bagged an order for Essar branded plates


Infrastructure Sector Developments


  • Pride India is setting up a new township project, 'American Township', at Balapur, in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
  • Petronet LNG is likely to commence work on its LNG terminal at Gangavaram in Andhra Pradesh in the second half of 2014
  • PSA and JNPT have inked a concession agreement for development of the Rs 8,200 crore IV container and marine chemical terminal at Nhava Sheva
  • IRB Infrastructure Developers has emerged as the successful bidder and has also LoA for the Kaithal - Rajasthan border section in Haryana
  • MoRTH has invited RfPs for four laning of the Numaligarh-Jorhat section in Assam
  • Punj Lloyd, has received an order worth Rs 1,270 crore, for construction of a 42 km, 2 x 3 lane expressway project in Yemen


Power Sector Developments


  • NTPC has invited bids for work related to 2 x 800 MW Darlipali Super Thermal Power Project Stage-I located at Darlipali, in Sundargarh district of Orissa
  • Niddodi ultra mega power project of Coastal Karnataka Power is unlikely to be implemented due to objections by the villagers
  • JSPL has inaugurated an 810 MW captive power plant at Kerjenga, in Angul district of Orissa
  • Unit-I of the nuclear-based power project has reached 90 per cent of its maximum capacity of 1,000 MW
  • Sonsoddo solid waste project of Fomento Green & Waste Management Service, in Goa is facing delay


Quote of the week:


Anil Swarup_ProjectsToday  
"About 50 percent of the issues relate to state government in terms of land acquisition, law and order, water supply and there are number of issues, but fortunately all the states have come on board, we have been having meetings in the states, we travel to the states, have discussion with them and lot of issues are getting sorted out. Therefore, almost 50 percent of the issues are related to the state government but the good news is that almost all states have come on board, not only they have come on board, they have taken a decision – 14 of them who have setup state projects monitoring groups to monitor projects below Rs 1,000 crore."

Anil Swarup,
Additional Secretary & Chairman,
Project Monitoring Group, Cabinet Secretariat
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