A loan for around Rs 4,000 crore has been pledged by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for two major highways projects in Mizoram and Meghalaya.
The bilateral funding agency approved this loan immediately after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited India last month.
These two projects will be implemented by National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL), an entity set up by the government to execute works in hill and border states.
The first project in Mizoram is to improve 380km of NH-54 between Aizawl and Tuipang. The second project is improvement of 40km of NH-51 between Tura and Dalu in Meghalaya.
“The approvals came quickly. We are pursuing more loans from JICA and Asian Development Bank as well.
“Government’s focus is to improve connectivity in the entire region and all the projects undertaken must be completed within the deadline,” an NHIDCL official said. He added that Cabinet approval will be sought for the projects and signing of the loan agreement.
About 19 road projects have been posed for JICA loan assistance. A road transport ministry official said that a loan from Asian Development Bank is being sought for the Imphal-Moreh road, which will improve transport network in the region.