Centre extends Covid waivers for road contractors again, experts frown

Non-serious players entering highway bids may pose completion risks, researchers say

Dhruvaksh Saha New Delhi
highways, roads

In February 2022, the Centre had taken cognisance of the aggressive bidding in the sector and reinstated earnest money deposit (EMD)

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The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has extended liquidity-related Covid-19 relief measures for highway contractors for another year, even as experts have aired concerns over non-serious players entering the market through these measures.
In a letter dated May 4, a copy of which Business Standard has reviewed, the highways ministry extended by a year the measures that were earlier applicable till March 31, 2023. The relaxations, first introduced in June 2020 and modified routinely subsequently, include monthly payments to road contractors for the work they have completed, waivers in delivery obligations, and more.
An official said representations were still being made requesting the extension, which was the reason the ministry chose to do so.

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First Published: May 15 2023 | 8:50 PM IST

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