Malaysian firms eye Rs.5000 Crore station makeover kitty in 1st big FDI boost for IR

NEW DELHI: In potentially the first big FDI in railways, Malaysia’s state-owned Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) will participate in the auction for redevelopment of Udaipur, Howrah, Indore, Secunderabad, Pune and Faridabad railway stations.

The estimated cost of redevelopment of these stations would be Rs 5,000 crore, a top rail ministry official said. CIDB Holding Malaysia has written to the Railway Board, saying it would participate in the ongoing Swiss challenge bidding process of these shortlisted stations on behalf of Malaysian companies.

The letter from CIDB Holding Malaysia chairman Judin Abdul Karim, dated June 17, did not disclose names of Malaysian companies that would be participating. Indian Railways had held a road show in Malaysia in March this year to showcase Investment opportunities in India’s rail sector.

The Malaysian board had earlier sought station redevelopment contracts through nomination route, but the railways asked it to participate in the Swiss challenge auction to win contracts as India does not allow nomination route, said the official cited earlier.

In 2014, India allowed 100% FDI in railways through automatic route. So far, foreign firms have established two rail loco factories in Bihar with a total investment of Rs 3,500 crore. Malaysian investment in station redevelopment could mark the first major foreign investment in the operations side of railways. The railway official said that various
Japanese and South Korean investors have also expressed interest in station redevelopment projects. Indian Railways has lined up 400 stations for redevelopment.

Malaysian investment in station redevelopment could mark the first major foreign investment in the operations side of railways. The railway official said that various Japanese and South Korean investors have also expressed interest in station redevelopment projects.

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