Cabinet hikes ministry’s powers for highway projects to Rs.500 crore

New Delhi, June 13 (IANS) The Union cabinet Thursday raised to Rs.500 crore the financial limit of the road transport ministry to sanction national highways projects.

An official release here said the modification of the delegation of powers for project approvals by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) is the result of a changed situation where “with increase in costs over time, a large number of projects taken up by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways are in the range of Rs.300 crore to Rs.500 crore”.

Since the process of formulation and appraisal of national highway projects is well established after the adoption of the prescribed bid process, model contract documents and manuals of specification and standards by the ministry, “this delegation is expected to expedite the approval process process without compromising on due diligence and physical prudence,” the statement added.

National Highways projects above Rs.500 crore would now be appraised by a committee chaired by Secretary, Expenditure or the Public Private Partnership Appraisal Committee (PPPAC), as applicable, and approval will be given by the CCEA.

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