By Max Clarke
As India plans to spend US$ 1 trillion on infrastructure development over the next five years, the Minister for Trade and Investment Lord Green is in Delhi today, with a UK rail mission, helping British firms seek out new business opportunities.
India’s busiest railway stations already handle more passengers than the combined numbers handled by all of the countries airports. India plans to spend £57 billion developing its rail network into world-class facilities across the country.
Other high profile infrastructure projects include the 5,800km ‘Golden Quadrilateral’ connecting the subcontinent’s four major metropolises Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.
“Transforming India’s infrastructure capacity is key to driving forward its future economic growth” said Lord Green.
“We hope UK firms, with their world-class expertise and capabilities, can be the partner of choice as India develops its rail and infrastructure networks.”
The rail mission is part of wider efforts to demonstrate UK expertise to meet India’s infrastructure needs. Last July, the UK and Indian Prime Ministers established the Britain-India Infrastructure Group (BIIG) to take forward business interests in India’s large scale infrastructure development programme. Business Secretary Dr Cable attended its inaugural meeting during his visit to India this January.
During the visit to Delhi, Lord Green will meet the Managing Director of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), Dr E Sreedharan. He will meet the Minister of Urban Development, Kamal Nath, and attend an event which brings together key UK and Indian partners in the infrastructure and rail sectors.
British companies including Mott MacDonald and Halcrow are already closely involved with the Delhi Metro project, and a number of other metro projects across India.
The UK Trade & Investment rail mission will also visit Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore.