Financing deals for Indian infrastructureNSE 0.27 % projects are surging on market expectations that the next government will come through with at least some of the spending that politicians are promising now during a heated election campaign. Local-currency loans for projects came to 520 billion rupees ($7.5 billion) in the quarter to March 31, the highest since 2011, and compared with 144 billion rupees in the previous three months, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
As India aims to become a $5 trillion economy by 2024, the government is pushing to eliminate bottlenecks to growth, and is responding to voters’ frustration with problems such as an inadequate number of expressways, crowded commutes and congested airports. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party said it will seek capital investments totaling $1.44 trillion by 2024 if voted back to power next month, while the main opposition Congress party is calling for modernizing all outdated rail infrastructure and increasing the length of national highways.
India’s focus on infrastructure will support growth in the sector, though the expansion will be hampered by land acquisition issues, according to Fitch Solutions Macro Research. For lenders, an increase in project financing will give them access to relatively low-risk, mainly government-backed deals for long periods, at a time when they are struggling to deal with the worst non-performing loan ratio among the world’s major economies.