By Accommodation Times News Services
The Union Railway Minister Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu has announced that the size of the Plan Budget has gone up by 52% from Rs. 65,798 crore in 2014- 15 to Rs. 1,00,011 crore in 2015-16. Support from the Central Government constitutes 41.6% of the total Plan Budget and Internal generation 17.8 %.
Introducing the Railway Budget for 2015-16 in Parliament today he said that in view of the fact that it would be a challenging task to initiate the mobilization of extra-budgetary resources, it is proposed to set up a Financing Cell in the Railway Board, which would seek the benefit of advice from experts in this field.
The Railways Minister informed the members that for financing remunerative projects through market borrowings, it is intended to tap low cost long term funds from insurance and pension funds, multi-lateral and bilateral agencies which can be serviced through incremental revenues.
Railways will create new vehicles to crowd in investment from long-term institutional investors and other partners. These may include setting up an infrastructure fund, a holding company and a Joint Venture with an existing NBFC of a PSU with IRFC, for raising long term debt from domestic as well as overseas sources, including multilateral and bilateral financial institutions that have expressed keen interest in working closely with Railways in this endeavor.
Railways will monetize its assets rather than sell them, he added.