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Indian Railways is the backbone of the socio-economic growth of India. World's fourth largest rail network and the second largest in Asia, Indian Railways has recently attracted immense global attention due to its successful turnaround to profitability. Indian Railways has been consistently recording impressive growth rates for the last few years. The cash surplus before dividend and net revenue are estimated at US$ 6.17 billion and US$ 4.53 billion, for 2007-08 respectively. This has placed Indian Railways in a much better position ahead of many of the Fortune 500 companies.

India Railway has taken up one of the most ambitious annual plans for 2008-09 with huge investment of about USD 7.91 billion. The plan includes a total budgetary support of USD 1.66 billion that includes USD 163.33 million from the Central Road Fund. This much ambitious plan is eying a massive profits of more than USD 20.447 billion for the year2008-09 .


The Indian Railways has initiated one of the most challenging growth targets for the coming year. This has been claimed on the basis of the most innovative plans and initiatives thought out by the ministry. Over past few years Indian Railways has remarkably transformed itself to set a bench mark in the global level.
  • increase in income through advertising on all Rajdhanis, with the cost of advertising being around US$ 1.26 million per train.

  • Introduction of new generation trains that would be fuel-efficient, recyclable and have low-emission to generate certified emission reduction credits.

  • Construction of a dedicated freight corridor, with an investment of US$ 81.92 million slated for 2008-09 and US$ 614.40 million for 2009-10.

  • Renewal of 44.5 million of PSC sleepers has been set for open line works.

  • Technological up gradation and modernization for higher operating efficiency

  • Development of PPP envisaged in new routes, railway stations, logistics parks, cargo aggregation and warehouses etc.

  • Development of 100 budget hotels with private participation in the vicinity of railway stations.

  • Installation of Wi-Fi for providing wireless access at 500 stations.

  • Introduction of marketing rights for advertising on railway tickets and reservation charts.

  • Establishment of integrated logistic parks on unused lands.

  • Development of agri-retail hubs, cold storage houses, multi-purpose warehouses on surplus land with the Railways.

  • Training of railway managers to meet future challenges, Indian Railways is planning to set an international management institute in New Delhi.

  • Renewal over 2941 kilometres (kms), which will require 3,39,288 tonnes of rail steel, and sleeper renewal over 2382 kms.

  • Implementation of Dynamic Pricing Policy, Tariff Rationalization, Non-Peak Season Incremental Freight Discount Scheme, Empty flow Direction Freight

  • Discount Scheme, Loyalty Discount Scheme and Long-term Freight Discount Scheme among others to boost its capacity utilization levels.
The rapid rise in international trade and domestic cargo has placed a great strain on the Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Kolkata rail track. Government has, therefore, decided to build dedicated freight corridors in the Western and Eastern high-density routes. The investment is expected to be about Rs. 22,000 crore (USD 4.525 billion). Requisite surveys and project reports are in progress and work is expected to commence within a year.

With increasing containerization of cargo, the demand for its movement by rail has grown rapidly. So far, container movement by rail was the monopoly of a public sector entity, CONCOR. The container movement has been thrown open to competition and private sector entities have been made eligible for running container trains. 14 applicants have submitted the application seeking permission for container train operation, which have been approved.

( Exchange rate used: 1 USD = 48.9060 INR )
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