Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power Coal and New & Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal has called for setting up Exchange Protected Fund that can pool in resources for funding core sector projects at interest rates between 7 to 8 per cent. He was speaking at the 109th Annual Session of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

L to R: Mahesh Gupta, Vice President, PHD Chamber, Sharad Jaipuria, President, PHD Chamber, Minister for Power Piyush Goyal, and Alok B. Shriram, Senior Vice President, PHD Chamber launching the report titled ‘Energizing Power Sector in India.’

The minister also agreed with Minister for Road Transport, Highways and Shipping Nitin Gadkari on the need for a reduction in interest rates for financing key infrastructure projects in road and highway, port and power sectors.

Goyal emphasised that the Exchange Protected Fund had the potential to pool together funds through which infrastructure projects could be financed at interest rates between 7 to 8 per cent to support the trillion-dollar Indian economy, so that growth was sustained at the desired level and infrastructure brought on par with world standards.

“My personal view is that the RBI should share the common concern of the government of the day for reduced rates of interest so that it is able to arrange finances for key infrastructure projects to fulfill one of its election promises as also provide relief to developers engaged in building India’s power, port, roads and highways projects,” the minister said.

He said that by 2017 the present government would make sure that Delhi was a 24×7 power served city on lines of Mumbai where power cuts were rare and feed all its streetlights with LED electrification by June 2015.

Goyal announced that coal production in India in the months of June, July and August, and even October, rose by 21 per cent even though the perception was that it had subsided due to the ongoing confusion in the coal sector. “The government will allocate the new coal blocks to suitable bidders with utmost transparency and efficiency,” he stated.

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