Infrastructure investment to be raised to 9% of GDP: Montek

NEW DELHI: The Government is proposing to raise investment in infrastructure sector to 9 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2012 to achieve the high growth rate planned during the Eleventh Five Year Plan (2007-2012).

"The cabinet has recently approved the draft of the Eleventh Plan which envisages an increase in infrastructure investment from 5 per cent of GDP to 9 per cent,'' Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said while speaking at a session on achieving 10 per cent growth at the World Economic Forum (WEF) here on Tuesday. The country would need an investment of $500 billion in infrastructure during 2007-2012, he said, adding that as much as $350 billion would be invested as per the busine ss-as-usual forecast. Another $150 billion would have to arranged from various sources including global financial market and that should not be a problem as "specific policies are in place for achieving a jump in investment'', he said.

Dr Montek said that as the country's savings rate is high and rising, "resources are not likely to be a problem.'' However, the scale of activity would need to be stepped up to improve the nation's infrastructure.

Asian Development Bank (ADB) Managing Director General Rajat Nag sounded more optimistic when he said it was possible for India to exceed the Planning Commission's target and raise infrastructure investment to 10.5-12.5 per cent of GDP in the years ahead . - PTI