Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart, Shinzo Abe, will be laying the foundation stone for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project on 14 September. In its size, scale and sweep, this project is probably the single largest foreign direct investment into India since independence. Expected to cost approximately $15 billion (Rs 90,000 crore), it is fully funded by the Japanese through a soft loan at an interest rate of 0.1 per cent per annum.
Modi has ensured that repayment of this loan is to begin after 15 years and to be repaid over the next 35 years. What makes this loan arrangement attractive is that even loans from multilateral agencies come with more stringent terms. The low interest rate and extended repayment period have the calculated effect of addressing upfront any potential economic downsides in the project. Read More…
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