4 lane highways to connect all AP ports at Rs 20,000 cr: Nitin Gadkari

All ports in Andhra Pradesh will be linked by four-lane highways at a cost of Rs 20,000 crore, Union Minister for Roads and Highways Nitin Gadkari said here on Friday. Speaking at the Global Investors Summit (GIS), Gadkari explained that these roads will be built to improve port connectivity regardless of whether a port is small, large, private or government-owned.

Crucial for this decision was the crossing of the three industrial corridors Visakhapatnam – Chennai, Chennai – Bengaluru and Hyderabad – Bengaluru by the state.

Noting that road infrastructure is very important in AP, he said, “I always tell people about America’s President John Kennedy’s famous statement that America’s roads aren’t good because America is rich, but America is rich because American roads are good.”

Recalling his days as Shipping Minister, Gadkari remarked that transporting goods between Chhattisgarh and Visakhapatnam used to be a difficult task and decided to build the Raipur – Visakhapatnam expressway corridor, which will cut the journey time to five and a half hours thereafter.

In addition, Gadkari said that a 430 km project linking Nagpur and Vijayawada will also be started.

At 16 percent, logistics costs are a major concern in India, which he vowed to reduce, according to the Minister of Road Transport and Highways. He noted that it is 10 percent in China and 12 percent in the United States and the European Union (EU).

Gadkari assured that logistics costs will be reduced in five years.

Likewise, he said the Department of Roads and Motorways is in the process of building electric motorways, calling hydrogen the “fuel of the future.”

He said the ministry is studying the feasibility of laying roadside fiber optic cables and conducting pilot projects between Hyderabad and Bengaluru.

In addition, he said that the Ministry of Road and Highways is focusing on the development of greenfield expressways, which are crucial for industrial development, adding that no one will invest without them.

Five greenfield expressways will be developed at a cost of Rs 30,000 crore, he added.

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