Indian Railways targets Rs.30,000 Crore through Asset Monetisation

The national transporter expects to get almost Rs 55,000 crore from the finance ministry as gross budgetary support.

NEW DELHI: The Indian Railways expects to raise Rs 30,000 crore in the current financial year from its first asset monetisation drive. The financially stressed national transporter is expecting the funds will give a boost to its capacity expansion plans for the next financial year.

The railways has lined up 30,000 km of its power transmission lines for monetisation and is in talks with two public sector units that are willing to invest in the project. The railways will sell power lines to these companies and lease it back by paying a fixed fee.

A special purpose vehicle (SPV) will be set up to operate and maintain these power lines, a top railway official said.

The official refused to identify the PSUs that have shown interest in buying power transmission assets of the railways, which expects to earn nearly Rs 30,000 crore from the sale.

As part of its land monetisation drive, the railways is lining up three land parcels in prime localities of Delhi and Mumbai. Land has been identified in Sarai Rohilla and Ashok Vihar in Delhi and Bandra in Mumbai. Though the size of the land is yet to be ascertained, the railways expects to raise Rs 2,000 crore from the sale of these land parcels.

Tenders for the land parcels will come out next year, the official said. Railway minister Piyush Goyal had said in November that the railways is not looking at more funds in the Union Budget for 2018-19 as it is focussed on monetising assets within. “Railways is looking at innovative ways to finance its expenditure,” he had said.

The railways plans to spend Rs 1.4-1.5 lakh crore on capacity expansion in the next financial year, up from Rs 1.31lakh crore it expects to spend in the current year. This will be largest ever outlay for the railways.

The national transporter expects to get almost Rs 55,000 crore from the finance ministry as gross budgetary support.

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