He said Bharatmala will considerably improve India's rankings in the Logistic Performance Index and generate huge direct and indirect employment in construction activity. According to government estimates, construction of 10,000 km of highways annually has the potential of generating four crore man-days of work.
The project also entails constructing 6,000 km long inter corridor and feeder routes, 2,000 km of border and global connectivity roads, 5,000 km to be upgraded under the national corridor efficiency programme, 800 km of greenfield expressways, 10,000 km under the national highway development programme and 2,000 km of coastal and port connectivity roads. "India will have world-class roads on par with the United States and Germany and special emphasis has been accorded to providing quality roads on borders adjoining China and Pakistan, besides far-flung tribal areas", he said.
"Bharatmala is the new umbrella programme for the highways sector that focuses on optimising efficiency of road traffic movement across the country by bridging critical infrastructure gaps".
He said 44 economic corridors being created with thrust on job creation.
Mr Gadkari said 550 districts will be covered under Bharatmala project as against earlier 300 districts. Presently only six national corridors have in the country.
Gadkari said that the Ministry has finalised the proposals to construct 28 new ring roads.
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He stressed that funding is not a problem for the entire project as funds to the tune of Rs 4-5 lakh crore can be raised from the capital market and the finance ministry has been approached for enhanced support.
Mr. Malik said 70-80% total freight will move on national highways against 40% freight at present due to BharatMala.
"Under the project, 6,000 km of inter-corridor and feeder routes will be constructed to ensure holistic connectivity", Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa said. Bharatmala Phase I - is to be implemented over a five years period of 2017-18 to 2021-22. In the first phase which will be undertaken for over three to five years, the project would cost Rs 5.5 lakh crore.
Bharatmala is likely to result in increasing average vehicular speed by 20-25 percent, reducing supply chain costs by 5 to 6 percent and besides giving impetus to production and exports.
The roads that would be built under Bharatmala will include state highways, national highways, and some state roads across the country.
The government will fund Bharatmala project through market borrowings, central road funds, monetising government-owned road assets, and budgetary allocationBharatmala project through market borrowings, central road funds, monetising government-owned road assets, and budgetary allocation.