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India to Sell 25 Airports, 160 Coal Mining Projects to Raise $81 Billion, Says Minister

© Nirmala Sitharaman's facebookIndia's Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
India's Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. - Sputnik International, 1920, 23.08.2021
The Indian Finance Minister launched the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) on Monday, and gave a list of the infrastructure assets that the Narendra Modi-led federal government intends to sell over the next four years. 
The Government of India plans to raise $81 billion (INR6 trillion) by selling 25 international and domestic airports, 15 railway stations and 160 coal mining projects,  Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has revealed.
​The proposed sales are part of the federal government's strategic divestment policy, as a result of which the state will retain ownership of only a few identified sectors with the rest being privatised.
According to the announcement, the plan includes selling road and railway assets, airports, power transmission lines and gas pipelines.
India's annual budget for 2021-22, has put the emphasis on asset monetisation to raise alternative financing for infrastructure.
“Monetising operating public infrastructure assets is a very important financing option for new infrastructure construction. A National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) of potential brownfield infrastructure assets will be launched,” the Finance Minister stated.
​"It is important that India recognises that the time has come for making the most out of our assets," Nirmala Sitharaman said. 
She emphasised that the NMP takes into account brownfield assets where investment has already been made and assets are either languishing or not fully monetised or under-utilised.  
She said that ownership of the assets would remain with the government, and that there would be a mandatory return of assets after a set time. 
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