Silver Line rail holds big investment opportunities: KRDCL at ASCEND 2020

Besides creating a fast and clean travel option across the state, the proposed 532-km Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod Semi High Speed Rail (SHSR) corridor project will throw up big investment opportunities for the private sector, a top official of Kerala Rail Development Corporation Ltd (KRDCL) said at ASCEND 2020 global investors conclave here today.

Showcasing the Rs 66,405-crore project at the event, KRDCL MD Mr V Ajith Kumar said the project will provide ample opportunities for private investment in areas ranging from civil and electrical contracts to tourism and hospitality business. 

There are investment opportunities in Transit Orient developments, Engineering-Procurement-Construction contracts worth Rs 38,000 crore for civil, electrical and system works, supply and operation of rail coaches,  high speed freight trains and  tourist trains, renewal power generation of around 300 MW, power storage systems etc, said Mr Ajith Kumar.

The Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), to be formed as part of the project, will set apart a substantial stake for the private sector for a wide array of related business and services, he said  in his presentation at a panel discussion on Mobility Development and Electric Vehicles. The panellists at the session included Transport Principal Secretary Shri K R Jyothilal IAS.

These include commercial land development and real estate, leasing and operation of rolling stock, owning and operation of RORO system and last-minute connectivity by e-vehicles.

Also, big investment is possible in the tourism and hospitality segment when the project is completed and trains start moving, Mr Ajith Kumar said.

 A joint venture of Kerala Government and the Ministry of Railways, the project has been cleared by the State Cabinet and also received in-principle approval of the Ministry of Railways which enables pre-investment activities.

Trains running on "Silver Line" will be covering the 532 km end-to-end distance from Kochuveli in state capital to Kasaragod by four hours, which now takes around 12 hours.

The completely green project also promises a set of long-term benefits like sharply reducing the road congestion caused by private vehicles and freight carrying trucks and significantly bringing down air pollution from emissions by petroleum fuel-driven motor vehicles

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