Kochi Metro likely to get AFD funds

Kochi, Sep 16 (IANS) A team from Agency France Development (AFD) will hold crucial talks with officials of Kochi Metro Rail Limited Tuesday to finalise part-funding for the state's Rs.5,180 crore Kochi Metro project, a top state government official said.

The mega project will run a length of 25 km, from Alwaye to Petta in the commercial capital of the state.

A three-member team of AFD officials is expected to finalise the funding which initially was put at Rs.1,000 crore.

According to the official, AFD is likely to consider raising the amount to Rs.1,400 crore, with an interest of just two percent.

"An AFD team was here a few months back. This is their second visit, and they are here to finalise the discussion as their director board meeting is scheduled for November. This matter will come up then. If things go as scheduled, the loan will be available early next year," the state government officer, who did not wish to be identified, said.

AFD is the main implementing agency for France's official development assistance to developing countries.

Work on Kochi Metro commenced in June this year. The entire project is being managed by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, with its principal advisor, 81-year-old E. Sreedharan, overseeing every aspect of the work.

Sreedharan has said that the first train would run on this track 1,095 days from the day work started.

KMRL is also talking to other funding agencies for raising much-needed funding.


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