Archive for July, 2014

Railway budget 2014-15

INFRASTRUCTURE,  MODERNISATION

* To up speed of some trains to 160-200 km/hour
* Diamond quadrilateral to have high-speed rail connectivity
* Need 9 trln rupees for Diamond Quadrilateral project
* Aim to up staff benefit fund to 800 rupees/capita vs 500 now
* Mull Railway University of tech, non-tech nature
* To start Interactive Voice Response for food quality feedback
* To offer air-conditioning in loco cabins
* Aim to enable buying of platform, unreserved tickets online
* E-ticketing system to accommodate 120,000 users at a time
* To up e-ticketing capacity to 7,200 ticket/minute vs 2,000 now
* Plan to take up eco, education tourism, in Northeast states
* To explore building boundary wall around tracks via PPP
* Facility for buying platform, unreserved tickets via Internet
* Aim to recruit 4,000 Railway Police Force constables
* Ladies coaches to be escorted by women rail police force
* Bio-toilets to be increased in trains
* Have 11,563 unmanned level crossings; aim to eliminate them
* To allot 17.8 bln rupee to eliminate unmanned level crossing
* Ultrasonic systems to be used to detect rail fractures
* Corpus funds for upkeep of stations mooted
* Coin-operated ticket vending machine to be experimented
* People can book seat, berth, coach via online booking
* To have RO drinking water units at stations, in trains
* To extend onboard housekeeping services to all major trains
* To use CCTV to monitor cleanliness at stations
* To outsource cleaning activities at 50 stations
* To set up a separate division for housekeeping
* To have food courts at major stations
* Propose to provide workstation for business passengers
* To introduce branded, pre-cooked ready-to-eat meals on train
* To involve individuals, corporates for passenger amenities
* Rail retirement room to be extended to all stations
* To have battery operated cars at major station platforms
* Plan to prioritise, set timeline for ongoing projects
* To focus on aggressive indigenisation of imported pdts
* Internal sources insufficient to meet expenses
* New projects will do injustice to struggling railways
* Automatic door closing technology in mainline, suburban train
* Examining all unmanned level crossings in detail
* 400 bln rupees needed for track renewals
* Indian Railways needs immediate course correction
* Unveiling new projects injustice to a struggling organisation
* Spent 184 bln rupees on doubling 5,050-km tracks in 10 years
* Four 30-year-old projects not yet completed
* Spent 410 bln rupees on 3,700-km new lines in 10 years
* More projects we have thinner we spread our resources

Railway Budget 2014 - 15

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NEW TRAINS

* Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train proposed
* Allocates 1 bln rupees for Diamond Quadilateral
* Special train to throw light on life of Swami Vivekananda
* To have special package trains for some tourist circuits
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FY15

* Target FY15 passenger traffic revenue of 446.5 bln rupees
* FY15 plan outlay seen 476.5 bln rupees
* FY15 total expenditure pegged 1.49 trln rupees
* FY15 pension provision seen at 288.5 bln rupees
* To scale down FY15 IRFC mkt borrowing to 117.9 bln rupee
* FY15 ordinary working expenses 1.13 trln rupees
* FY15 freight earning pegged 1.06 trln rupees
* Aim freight traffic growth of 4.9% in FY15
* See 4.9% growth in freight traffic FY15
* Aim freight earnings of 1.06 trln rupees in FY15
* FY15 total receipts pegged 1.64 trln rupees
* FY15 estimate surplus 6.02 bln rupees
* FY15 budget allocation for cleanliness up 40% on year
* Maximum plan outlay for projects to be completed in FY15
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FY14

* FY14 passenger earnings down by 9.68 bln rupees
* FY14 gross traffic receipts up 12.8% at 1.39 trln rupees
* FY14 working expenses 975.71 bln rupees
* FY14 surplus 37.83 bln rupees
* FY14 internal resource generation short by 27.9 bln rupees
* FY14 freight earning short by 9.4 bln rupee vs revised aim
* FY14 operating ratio at 94%
* FY14 gross traffic receipt 1.39 trln rupees
* Gross traffic receipts short of revised aim by 9.42 bln rupee
* FY14 passenger earning short by 9.7 bln rupee vs revised aim
* Bore 23 paise/passenger per km loss in FY14
* Unrealistic to depend only on fare hike to meet fund needs
* Fare revision decision was tough, but necessary
* Fare hikes will bring additional 80 bln rupees to Railways
* Need to explore alternate sources of resource mobilisation
* Only depend on fare hikes for mobilising funds
* Mismanagement, apathy led railways to cash-starved status
* Spent 94 paise for every 1 rupee in FY14
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REVENUES AND EXPENSES

* Rail revenue to be linked to fuel prices
* Revenue foregone on suburban fare hike rollback 6.1 bln rupee
* To take corrective steps to combat fund crunch
* Require 1.82 trln rupees to complete 359 projects
* Need 5 trln rupees/year for next 10 yrs for ongoing projects
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FINANCING, INVESTMENT

* Even high-speed train projects need PPP financing
* Seeking nod to allow FDI in railways
* Bulk of new projects to be financed via PPP
* Looking at PPP for raising bulk of resources
* Need foreign, domestic private investment for rail infra
* Need private FDI investment in railway sector
* Need to explore PSU surplus resources for rail infra projects
* Bulk of future projects to be funded via PPP mode
* Need to leverage Railways’ PSU resources
* Unrealistic to hike fares and burden passengers
* Govt funding insufficient to meet requirements
* Need to explore alternate sources of invest for railways
* Mull private investment in rail infra
* Incomplete projects need 1.82 trln rupee invest
* To seek Cabinet OK for FDI in railways, except operations
* Foot-overs, lifts, escalators at major stations via PPP
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MISCELLANEOUS

* Safety, cleanliness are high priorities
* Tariff policy adopted so far lacked practical approach
* The more projects we add the thinner we spread ourselves
* Freight rates revised periodically to compensate for losses
* Past focus has been on sanctioning projects, not execution
* Decline in freight traffic is revenue forgone
* Sustaining social duty hard without sacrificing efficiency
* Currently railways caries only 31% of total freight in India
* Indian Rail backbone of supply chain of defence establishment
* India Rail carries over 1 bln tn freight per year
* Vast tracts of hinterland still wait for connectivity
* Have 12,500 trains carrying 23 mln passengers/day
* Aim to be largest freight carrier in the world
* Feel there’s solution for challenges faced by railway
* Flooded with requests for new trains

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Business activity in Indian manufacturing sector expanded in June at its quickest pace since February driven by higher domestic and export order flows. The HSBC Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), a headline index designed to measure the overall health of the manufacturing sector, rose to 51.5 in the month of June from 51.4 in May. Though the pace of expansion was marginal over previous month, the reading remained above the crucial 50 mark for the eighth consecutive month that separates growth from contraction.

Manufacturers highlighted improved demand conditions in both domestic as well as export markets with all three broad areas of the manufacturing sector registering higher production volumes. Among the three monitored categories, capital goods sector witnessed sharpest rise in new orders. HSBC survey highlighted a marked and accelerated expansion of new export orders, pushing output sub-index to 52.4 from 51.7 in the previous two months.

Encouraged over the growing new work, Indian manufacturers also raised their quantity of purchases in the reported month. Buying activity increased at the fastest pace since March 2013 leading to high pre-production stocks. Although, the rate of stock accumulation was only slight and weaker than the long-run series trend, manufacturing firms also added workforce in June. However, the rate of job creation was marginal and slower than in the previous month.

Further, the survey signaled high inflationary pressure with the rate of cost inflation was solid and sharpest in three months. Manufacturers indicated that higher prices paid for metals, plastics, textiles, food, and energy led to a further increase in average purchase prices. Accordingly, in order to protect margins, firm increased their output prices. The rate of charge inflation was at an eight-month peak, signalling a further rise in inflation.

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