The credit facility agreement will be signed between the Centre and Agence Française de Développement (AFD), French international development agency, on Friday in New Delhi for a €180-million long-term loan for the Kochi Metro Rail project. The agreement will be signed by Joint Secretary of the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Rajesh Khullar, and AFD chief executive officer Anne Paugam, in the presence of Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) managing director Elias George at 3 pm at Kalpavriksha Hall, Department of Economic Affairs. French Ambassador to India François Richier will also participate in the signing ceremony as a co-signatory. Anne will visit Kochi on Saturday to sign the project agreement between the AFD and KMRL.
“She will have discussions with the KMRL managing director and other senior KMRL officials about the project and the urban transport landscape in Kerala,” the official KMRL spokesperson said.The agreement between the AFD and KMRL consists of €180 million, approximately `1,500 crore, direct sovereign loans with a repayment period of 25 years, including five-years’ moratorium aimed to support the KMRL to implement the first metro line in Kochi. The KMRL has also requested the AFD to provide technical assistance for preparing a workable action plan for the realisation of the Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (UMTA).The French financial agency has also expressed interest in joining hands with Kochi Corporation on the betterment of transport sector in Kochi. AFD representatives, who held discussions with Kochi Mayor Tony Chammany, had shown keen interest in investing in the non-motorised transport project mooted by the Corporation.
As per the project, cycle tracks and footpaths will be constructed at Fort Kochi, Mattanchery and other tourist spots.
KMRL on Sapling Plantation Drive
Kochi: The Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) on Thursday launched a sapling plantation campaign as part of its green initiatives. The agency initiated the campaign by planting four varieties of saplings along S A Road along Elamkulam-Vyttila stretch. Saplings of laburnum cassia (kanikkonna), Indian beech (ungu), queen of flowers (mani maruthu) and medlar (ilanji) were planted.“We have identified three more stretches to plant saplings — the area near BOT bridge up to Thevara and two more parks in the city. We have already talked to the authorities concerned to look into the possibilities of planting saplings along the Container Terminal Road,” KMRL Managing Director Elias George said.