JICA wants funding requests to be routed through FinMin

JICA wants funding requests to be routed through FinMin

JICA is already funding the Bengaluru Metro Rail Project.

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the external funding agency of the Japanese government, is ready to fund new infra projects if it is routed via the Ministry of Finance.

In an interaction with DH, JICA India Office chief representative Katsuo Matsumoto said the agency is happy to help the state government in the infrastructure development projects, especially decongesting Bengaluru.

"New project funding is a policy issue and it is to be discussed with our foreign ministry, finance ministry and ministry of economy. These discussions should be pushed by the Indian prime minister and supported by the Indian finance ministry," Matsumoto said.

"Once these requests come through official channels, the three ministries of the Japanese government will coordinate to take a final decision. If a decision is taken by the Japanese government, then JICA will be in a position to fund the project and make it happen," he added.

Matsumoto's comments came while discussing government initiative to come up with new projects like the elevated corridor, high-speed link to the airport and elevated peripheral ring road.

Matsumoto also pointed out that the elevated road project will really help decongest Bengaluru. "We have proved about elevated corridors in Tokyo way back for 1965 Olympics. This project has been a success in Jakarta too. It will definitely help Bengaluru," he said.

"Actually, these investments are a new idea and we are not in a position to comment on it. The proposal should not come from the Karnataka government but it should come from the central government, from the finance ministry," Matsumoto said.

JICA is already funding three projects, Cauvery Water Supply Scheme (CWSS), BMRCL project and Power Project, in Karnataka. "More than 10 projects have been completed in the state and we are satisfied with the repayment mechanism of the state government," he said.

The Japanese agency is already committed to 65-km-long eight-lane of Peripheral Ring Road (PRR). On BMRCL's second phase funding, Matsumoto said JICA is ready to take it up.

In addition to the lending, JICA is also giving grant-in-aid of 1.2 billion yen for Intelligent Transport System (ITS) for Bengaluru. As part of biodiversity conservation and afforestation project, JICA has already invested Rs 2,000 crore in Karnataka.

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