From THE HINDU group of publications
Friday, November 23, 2001


Pact for Panagarh-Palsit annuity project signed

Our Bureau

NEW DELHI, Nov. 22

THE concession agreement for developing the 63 km-long highway project between Panagarh and Palsit on NH 2 in West Bengal on annuity basis was signed here on Wednesday between the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and Malaysia's Gamuda-WCT combine.

The Malaysian joint venture combination was awarded the project after quoting the lowest annuity amount of Rs 55.5 crore which will be paid to the private operator semi-annually during a 15-year concession period.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers have been appointed as financial consultants for the project.

Panagarh-Palsit was the pilot project to be put to tender by NHAI under the annuity method. The concession agreements for developing two more highway projects on annuity basis between Tuni-Anakapalle and Tambaram-Tindivanam were also signed recently by NHAI and GMR Group-UE(M) joint venture, which had bagged the projects.

The Tuni-Anakapalle and Tambaram-Tindivanam highway projects will be developed through the GMR Tuni-Anakapalle Expressway Project Pvt Ltd and the GMR Tambaram-Tindivanam Expressway Project Pvt Ltd floated by the GMR Group-UE (M) combine.

NHAI will pay an annuity amount of Rs 29.48 crore semi-annually for 15 years to the GMR led consortum for the Tuni-Anakapalle project and Rs 41.85 crore semi-annually for the Tambaram-Tindivanam project.

Under the annuity concept of developing highways, the private operator will not collect tolls from the users of the facility. But, he will be paid a fixed semi-annual sum by NHAI during the concession period to compensate him for the capital costs, operation and maintenance expenses of the project and returns thereon.

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