The Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, participated as the Guest of Honour for the business conclave ‘Vriddhi’ organised by the Indian Institute of Management, Visakhapatnam (IIM-V). This is a two-day flagship annual conference which concluded on 30 January 2022. The Union Minister, through video conference, said that the ministry has awarded work to the tune of Rs 15 lakh crore across India. This includes Rs 2 lakh crore for Andhra Pradesh. The more specific project is the Raipur-Visakhapatnam greenfield Expressway co will enhance growth to the three States of Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, and Chhattisgarh.
The Visakhapatnam-Raipur Greenfield Expressway is a Hybrid Annuity Mode (HAM) project with a total length of 464.662 km. The Union Government has sanctioned this budget for supporting road infrastructure and expansion of highways. The Raipur-Visakhapatnam Greenfield Expressway starts from Abhanpur near Raipur (Chhattisgarh) and ends at Sabbavaram near Vizag (Andhra Pradesh). The highway’s greenfield alignment will pass through the states of Chhattisgarh (124.611 km), Odisha (262.211 km), and Andhra Pradesh (99.629 km). This highway will reduce the distance from Raipur to Vizag from 590 km to 464 km and the travel time from 14 hours to 7 hours.
Thirty-five Multi-Modal Logistics Park (MMLPs) will be developed across the country. As part of this initiative, one MMLP will be developed in Visakhapatnam. The MMLPs are a key policy initiative by National Highways Logistics Management Limited, which comes under the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MORTH) and the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). The Union Minister said that the primary focus was on the development of road infrastructure and allied highway initiatives like Multi-Modal Logistics Parks (MMLPs) and other infrastructure development. This is for the promotion of integrated infrastructure under PM Gati Shakti National Plan.
Mr Gadkari also emphasised the reduction of logistic costs to below 10% from the existing 30% to 40% for making the retail market more competitive and boosting economic growth. He advised students to convert problems into opportunities with commercially viable solutions, and the need for the application of knowledge and skillsets that MBA graduates possess, in contributing to the planning, implementation and management of infrastructure projects.