The State could encourage public-private participation to put in place cold storage and transportation infrastructure for the food-processing sector.

K.V. Kurmanath

Hyderabad, Jan. 18

THE Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has said that a sector-oriented focus would help the Government identify investment opportunities for public-private participation in infrastructure development in Andhra Pradesh.

Though the State promoted integrated apparel parks and food processing clusters with private participation, it must use the existing institutional framework to encourage public-private participation in industrial infrastructure, especially to meet the specific needs of certain sectors.

For one, the State could encourage public-private participation to put in place cold storage and transportation infrastructure for the food-processing sector.

Stating that Andhra Pradesh was a forerunner in creating policies to encourage private sector participation in various infrastructure projects, a CII executive felt that the State needed policy-level initiatives to support the private participation in promoting infrastructure to boost growth in specific areas such as mining of coal, bauxite and quartz.

Quoting from a study it conducted on the state of public-private participation recently, a CII executive said another important area that needed focus was road sector.

Though the State constructed bridges and bypass roads through BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) model, it still had a great scope to attract more private investment in constructing expressways and State highways.

He pointed out that the State should speed up the BOT projects such as the Rs 1,760-crore Hyderabad bypass (220 km) project and the Rs 1,440-crore Vijayawada bypass (180 km) project.

It also asked the State Government to work for capacity building of urban local bodies in order to promote integrated development of urban infrastructure covering roads, drainage system and solid waste management.

Andhra Pradesh had seven municipal corporations, 109 municipalities and one cantonment board. These urban bodies housed 27 per cent of State's population. "Unless the Government encourages urban local bodies in facilitating public-private partnerships, the infrastructure development will not be adequate to cope up with the ever growing demand," a CII executive said.

The CII study felt that the public-private partnerships required significant preparatory efforts at every stage of the project cycle. "There has to be a strong accent on providing clarity of roles, risks and obligations for all stakeholders," it said.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated January 19, 2006)
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