Government announces Rs 6 lakh crore asset monetisation scheme
- Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced an asset monetisation scheme on Monday
- The monetisation plan is worth Rs 6 lakh crore
- The scheme is intended to generate employment
The government on Monday announced an infrastructure asset monetisation plan worth Rs 6 lakh crore over a four-year period from 2022 to 2025 and across sectors. Announcing the scheme, Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that under-utilised assets will be monetised but the ownership of the assets will remain with the government.
"Asset monetisation, based on the philosophy of creation through monetisation, is aimed at tapping private sector investment for new infrastructure creation," Sitharaman said at a press conference in New Delhi, according to ANI.
The scheme is meant to generate employment, which in turn will provide a fillip to the country's economic growth, "seamlessly integrating the rural and semi-urban areas for overall public welfare," the minister added.
In what is seen as a response to the Opposition charge that the government was selling national assets, Nirmala Sitharaman said it was important that India recognized and understood that the time had come for making the most out of our assets.
The minister clarified that land will not be monetised under National Monetisation Plan only brownfield assets will be up for offer. The assets to be monetised will be across rail, road and power sectors.
The estimated value of the scheme corresponds to 14 % of the proposed outlay for Centre under the National Infrastructure Pipeline (Rs 43 lakh crore). The end objective of this initiative is to enable "infrastructure creation through monetisation" wherein the public and private sector collaborate, each excelling in their core areas of competence, so as to deliver socio-economic growth and quality of life to the country's citizens, she added.
Monday's announcement is in keeping with the government's vision laid out in Union Budget 2021-22. The budget had highlighted the importance of asset monetisation and to create innovative and alternative financing for infrastructure.
Taking off from the budget speech, policy think tank NITI Ayog had finalised the microplan for the scheme that has was created for a four-year period from financial year 2021-22 to 2024-25.
The government has also developed a portal to facilitate investments. It is meant to provide a one-stop shop to investors keen on taking over assets of government departments and ministries.