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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Govt to set timeframes for okaying projects

Arnab Mitra and Mahua Venkatesh , Hindustan Times  New Delhi, September 24, 2013
First Published: 23:28 IST(24/9/2013) | Last Updated: 23:31 IST(24/9/2013)

The government will set time frames for approvals of mega infrastructure projects, which would be segregated into different categories, in order to woo investors and to make India an easier place to do business with.

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The Cabinet Committee on Investment (CCI) is soon expected to look into the matter. Different categories would have a different time frame for approval.

"There needs to be some certainty and the CCI would look into the issue, even if a project has to be turned down, it needs to be done within that time frame," Arvind Mayaram, secretary, department of economic affairs told Hindustan Times.

The move comes after global steel behemoths Posco and Arcelor-Mittal decided to pull out mega projects due to deteriorating market conditions and delays in securing the required clearances.

The CCI, in the meanwhile, this fiscal year has approved primarily infrastructure projects worth $30 billion. The approvals would restart the investment cycle in the economy, which is battling to contain its fiscal and current account deficits. Sources said that the CCI would soon take up more projects for approval.

Last month, the CCI cleared 18 power projects and nine infrastructure projects.

The industry chambers have underlined the need to look into the issue of clearances of projects to ensure an enabling business environment, which is the need of the hour to woo investors.

The approvals and clearances of major infrastructure projects is expected to improve investment environment in the country by injecting transparency, accountability and efficiency.

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