With the new government coming in, NHAI is hopeful to meet its target of building roads as per the Twelfth Plan.
In the past two to three years, activity in road projects has been very slow with tenders floated by the National Highways Authority of India finding no bidders to evince interest in projects.
This is mainly due to lack of interest in the new BOT projects. The Authority is ready with road projects spanning a length of about 3,300 km at an estimated investment of Rs300 billion for the current financial year 2014-15. The Authority has acquired a large part of land and has received clearances for most of the proposed projects. But, response from the developers would be of utmost important for the projects to move forward.
In the fiscal 2013-14 about 21 of NHAI tenders did not attract a single bid, whereas two to three years ago a single BOT project used to attract 15-20 bidders. The reason for the setback in evincing interest in these road projects is delay in acquisition of land and pending clearances, which made developers to restrict themselves from participation.
So, NHAI introduced EPC mode to attract bidders and awarded 6,800 km of projects in FY12, 1,128 km in FY13 and 1,646 km in FY14, mostly on EPC mode. But hereto, the Authority could see a sharp decline in numbers of bids.
During the fiscal 2010 and 2012, NHAI awarded most of the projects without land and approvals in hand, which could help the Authority meeting its target. But, after a decline in number of bidders evincing interest in the projects and some of the bidders even moving out of the already bagged contracts, NHAI has planned to award the contract with major portion of land in possession before signing the concession agreement.