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Building a strong infrastructural foundation is essential for the growth and development, says Ashok P Chhajer, Sr. General Manager – OE Sales, (Domestic Market), Balkrishna Industries

Building a strong infrastructural foundation is essential for the growth and development, says Ashok P Chhajer, Sr. General Manager – OE Sales, (Domestic Market), Balkrishna Industries

Is the infrastructure sector moving with the desired momentum to attain the national goals of growth as envisioned by the government?
A developing country’s infrastructure forms the backbone of its economy and the Government of India has been strongly focusing on the infrastructure sector. To support India’s goal of being a $5 trillion economy by 2025, the government has undertaken various projects. As per my understanding, all of these projects are being passed over well and progressing at the speed envisioned by the government. Various projects, including the airport, ports, roadways, railways, irrigation, and many more have been focused on as per the government’s plan.

What were the key infra announcements of 2022 and their impact according to you in 2023?
One of the major steps taken by the government has been the expansion of various initiatives such as the National Infrastructure Pipeline, National Monetisation Pipeline, Bharatmala Pariyojana, changes in the Hybrid Annuity Model (HAM) and quick allotment of asset monetisation to support the various infrastructural projects. Another important announcement was the allocation of approximately Rs. 10 lakh crore by the government which included an outlay approximately of Rs 60,000 crore for the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, a budget approximately of Rs 134,015 crore for the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), approximately Rs 76,549 crore to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs among others. The government also announced the plan to manufacture approximately 400 more Vande Bharat trains over the next three years which will boost travel efficiency. Additionally, many projects focusing on irrigation, airports, metro infrastructure, metro rails and many more. I believe that the purpose of the increased focus on the infrastructural projects is to boost the economic growth of the country and we will definitely begin to see its positive impact within 2023. Building a strong infrastructural foundation is essential for the growth and development of a developing country. With this in mind, I do expect the Budget for 2023-24 to see an increased investment towards the infrastructural sector.

How do you see yourself contributing towards the growth of the infrastructure sector in 2023?
Being an agile company with a strong focus on building a quality products portfolio, which will effectively serve the infrastructure sector. Towards this, we have invested in building state-of-art infrastructure & a dedicated team of engineers at our R&D lab who are committed to understanding the needs of the markets and designing futuristic products. I believe that the products, we plan to launch in 2023 will be game-changers for the infrastructural sector. We already have an SKU of 3,200 with a distribution network of over 160 countries including 1,100 SKUs that have been curated specifically for the Indian terrain regions and based on the requirements of the Indian market. Our tires are highly durable and have a longer tire life with a special tread design. Our teams are actively analyzing the infrastructural market demands and working assiduously to ensure that our products are designed with a futuristic approach and are able to pioneer growth for this sector.

What are the measures that will assist in the development of the sector as we step into the New Year?
As we wrap up 2022, I think it is wise to wait until the government officially states the plan for the various projects, their progress, and the hindrances so as to understand the right steps needed for the progress of this sector. I do believe however that the government of India is already looking into the measures required for the growth of this sector and I hope that we are able to achieve the various projects under National Infrastructure Pipeline that include transportation, logistics, energy, water & sanitation, communication, social infrastructure and commercial infrastructure in its planned time.




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