Narmada Project capex crosses Rs 30,000 crore
By A Business Correspondent
The total capital expenditure for the Narmada project in Gujarat has crossed the Rs 30,000-crore mark and is likely to touch Rs 44,000 crore by the year 2004 when the height of the dam is increased to 110 metres. The additional expenditure is due to cost escalation. So far nearly 70 per cent of the funds have spent on constructing canals.
Apart from providing irrigation and drinking water facilities, the project aims to generate 1,450 mw of power.
Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam has raised nearly Rs 5,000 crore by way of bonds, which are due for repayment in the coming years. In addition, Rs 1,020 crore was raised through Narmada Nidhi FDs. The Nigam has already raised more than Rs 500 crore through bonds during the current year and this figure could cross Rs 600 crore shortly. Though the latest bonds were issued at a modest interest rate of 11.25-11.5 per cent, the earlier bonds were issued at nearly 20 per cent interest. The Nigam may have to resort to additional borrowings to repay past loans if it fails to generate sufficient revenue by 2004.
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