The Ministry of Road Transport and Highway (MoRTH) declared the financial year 2018-19 as the ‘Year of Construction’. The infrastructure industry consolidated on the gains accrued from the major reforms introduced in the last few years.
The FY 2018-19 was also a year of monitoring the ongoing projects, while addressing roadblocks and adding to the momentum achieved in the previous year. The ministry completed all the projects that were awarded till 2015-16. The aim was to set the highest ever target of constructing at least 12,000 kilometers of national high way in FY 2018-19, as compared to 9,829 kilometers constructed in FY 2017-18.
The target was almost overhauled as 10,800 kms of highway were completed in the financial year of 2018-19. The balance ongoing works (which have been awarded, appointed dates declared and works going on at sites) are more than 30,200 kms during last year. Majority of NH projects were awarded on Engineering Procurement Construction (EPC) mode, followed by Hybrid Annuity Mode (HAM) in the previous year.
UnderBharatmalaPariyojana, over 61,300 km of road projects, costing more than Rs 6.48 lakh crores are in progress. These projects will be awarded to the private players in the coming years. One of the leading infrastructure developers in the country, IRB Infrastructure is banking on its robust in-house integrates project execution capabilities, construction and operation, and maintenance, across both its business verticals, Build Operate Transfer (BOT) and Hybrid Annuity Model (HAM).
Growing its presence beyond its stronghold states of Maharashtra and Gujarat, IRB is establishing a strong foothold in seven states, including Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Haryana and Tamil Nadu.
On the other hand, the government is keen to go full throttle and increase the opportunities in the road construction sector going forward. Some of the key industry challenges at this juncture are land acquisition and availability of skilled technical personnel. So, it will be interesting to see how the industry deals with the challenges and achieves the set targets in the coming years.