With Japan International Cooperation Agency’s revised terms and conditions on funding the Phase-IV Metro project not ‘acceptable’ to the government, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) may go for domestic borrowing to finance the proposed 103.93-km corridor that would increase the length of Delhi Metro network to around 400 km.
“Funding of Phase-IV may be done through domestic borrowings. We are also contemplating tax-free bond issues, but a final decision is yet to be taken,” said DMRC managing director Mangu Singh.
The detailed project report for the corridor has already been readied and talks on funding the project were on with JICA. But the lending agency’s condition for the ‘step’ loan — that a portion of materials for the project must be bought from Japanese companies — hasn’t found favour with the government.
The government is now looking at the possibility of developing the project through the PPP model, he said.
DMRC plans to construct six new stretches, which include a 21.73-km link connecting Rithala to Narela, 28.92 km from West Janakpuri to RK Ashram, 12.54 km from Mukundpur to Maujpur, 12.58 km from Inderlok to Indraprastha, 20.20 km from Aero City to Tughlakabad and 7.96 km from Lajpat Nagar to Saket G Block.
“We may go for the PPP route in construction of phase four, but the entire project cannot be executed through it,” he said. Asked whether DMRC would consider going public, Singh said,”We may go public, but that does not seem probable, as we are still negative in our balance sheets.”
Singh, who succeeded R Sridharan in 2012, said there was a need to raise passenger fares as they have not been hiked since 2009. He, however, evaded a direct query on whether a rise was imminent.