Highway Construction in FY24: Road Ministry’s 13,814 km Target

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has set an ambitious target of constructing 13,814 km of national highways in the financial year 2023-24, which is higher than the previous year’s achievement of 13,327 km. The ministry is confident of meeting this target despite the challenges posed by the covid-19 pandemic and the rising cost of raw materials.

Achievements and challenges

In the current fiscal year, the MoRTH constructed 6,217 km of national highways until December 2023, as opposed to 5,774 km in the corresponding period in FY23. This shows an increase of 7.7% in the pace of highway construction despite the disruptions caused by the second wave of covid-19. The ministry also awarded 7,597 km of highway projects in the same period, which is 26.3% higher than the previous year’s 6,015 km.

However, the ministry also faced several challenges in achieving its targets, such as land acquisition issues, environmental clearances, litigation cases, contractual disputes, and rising cost of inputs like steel and cement. According to a report by rating agency ICRA, the cost escalation for highway projects could be in the range of 8-10% due to the increase in raw material prices. The ministry has taken several steps to mitigate these challenges, such as revising the compensation rates for land acquisition, expediting the clearances from various authorities, resolving the disputes through conciliation and arbitration, and providing relief measures to the contractors and concessionaires.

Future plans and vision

The MoRTH has also set a target of awarding 10,000 km of national highway projects in FY24. The ministry has asked the companies to prepare detailed project reports (DPR) for unawarded identified projects to increase the pace of awarding in FY24. The ministry is also working on developing access-controlled high-speed corridors as part of Vision 2047, which will be the next phase of highway development after Bharatmala Pariyojana programme. The vision document envisages building six expressways and 12 greenfield corridors with a total length of 16,500 km by 2047.

The MoRTH’s target of constructing 13,814 km of national highways in FY24 is the highest so far and reflects its commitment to boost infrastructure development and economic growth in the country. The ministry is hopeful that with its proactive measures and innovative solutions, it will be able to overcome the challenges and achieve its target successfully. To quote some of the officials from the ministry:

  • “The road construction target for 2023-24 is being raised to 14,000 km from the 12,500 km that was earlier decided,” Secretary at MoRTH Anurag Jain said.
  • “We are reviewing this target and will soon revise it upwards as the minister wants more roads to be constructed,” a senior official told reporters here. When asked whether the government will be able to reach its target of constructing 40 km of roads per day, the official said without divulging further details, “We will be pretty close to it.”
  • “For 2023-24, MoRTH has taken up targets to award 12,000 km and construct 12,500 km of highways in the country,” Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari said.



Send Us A Message