Addressing a press conference today in National Capital, union finance minister Arun Jaitley announced a number of initiatives under New India Program. According to the finance minister, these programs will draft way to a New India and will provide employment to a number of people in the coming years. Also, the infrastructure development will prove to be a catalyst in the growth that the country is going to experience in the upcoming time.
Below is a list of major announcements made by Arun Jaitley at today’s press conference
- Mega Road Program: Under this scheme, the government had approved construction of 83,000 kilometres of road over the next 5 years. The estimated cost of this project is calculated to be ₹7 lakh crores. By 2022, this program will generate 14.2 crore days of employment and this is set to create huge employment opportunities for millions of people. The road network will connect more than 44 economic corridors across the country and will pave way for huge economic activities. The government plans to connect major ports to every economic destination of the country and every road connecting these economic destinations will be four-lane. Another independent program, named as Bharatmala Highway Project is worth ₹3.5 lakh crores and it will cover over 35,000 kilometres.
- The government has also announced a mega bank recapitalisation for the banks worth ₹2.11 lakh crores. Under this, the government will provide support to the banks who are already struggling due to increase in NPAs (Non-performing assets).
- NPAs have emerged to be the biggest problem in front of the banks. According to the latest available data, the banks have a total of ₹8.35 lakh crores as non-performing assets as of now. In March 2014, the NPAs were 36% which saw a huge jump and reached to 82% in June 2017. Banks including IDBI Bank, IOB, UCO Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, Central Bank, Dena Bank, Union Bank and Corporation Bank have over 15% of their gross advances as NPAs and according to the analysts, that is alarming. RBI has declared that no bank should have over 6% of NPAs out of their total gross advances.
- The government is hopeful of making banks as an important catalyst in the ongoing and upcoming growth and it is committed to enabling them to become a bigger part in the economic development.