August 23, 2021, 7:33 PM

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced the Centre’s infrastructure asset monetization plan under the National Monetization Pipeline (NMP) to raise 6 lakh crore ($81 billion). As part of the plan, the government’s infrastructure assets will be sold over the next four years. The plan will serve as a medium-term road map for the government’s asset sale initiative.

Here are the key points from the launch:

- The private participants will have to hand over the assets to the government after a pre-determined period of time. The money obtained through the monetization exercise will be channelised into infrastructure building.

- The entire exercise ‘will generate greater value and unlock resources for economy,’ the finance minister pointed out.
- Infra assets worth ₹ 6 lakh crore will be monetised across the rail, road and power sectors over 4 years and ‘projects have been identified to monetise the assets’ NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant highlighted.
- The government will monetise assets worth ₹ 1.6 lakh crore from the roads sector, ₹ 1.5 lakh crore from the railway sector and ₹ 79,000 crore from the power sector, Kant said. The centre will also monetise ₹ 20,800 crore from airports, ₹ 13,000 crore from ports, ₹ 35,000 crore from telecom, ₹ 11,500 crore from stadiums and ₹ 45,200 crore from power transmission sectors.
- Most of the asset monetisation will take place either through the InvIT mode or public-private partnerships.
- The government is committed to involve the private sector and private capital to develop infrastructure, the Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar said.
- Infrastructure has huge multiplier effects and the monetisation pipeline is the next step in mobilising private capital for the development of infrastructure, Kumar added.
- The ministries of roads, transport & highways, railways, power, pipeline & natural gas, civil aviation, shipping ports & waterways, telecommunications, food & public distribution, mining, coal, housing and urban affairs will be a part of the National Monetisation Pipeline, the Finance Ministry elaborated.
- Nirmala Sitharaman had first spoke of a National Monetisation Pipeline during Union Budget 2021 and asserted that the government was looking at innovative ways to raise finances.
- Asset monetisation is the process of creating new sources of revenues by unlocking the value of unutilised and underutilised public assets, according to the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management website.
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