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Andhra Pradesh inks pacts with Singapore consortium to kickstart startup project

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Pushing the first major real estate venture in Andhra Pradesh’s new capital city Amaravati a step further,the state government inked two agreements with the Singapore consortium to kickstart the long-delayed startup area development project. Singapore’s Minister for Information and Communications S Iswaran promised on the occasion that in six months from now, there would be “significant progress on ground” in the startup area development.

Amaravati Development Corporation and Singapore Amaravati Investment Holdings Limited which together constitute the Amaravati Development Partners (ADP), a special purpose vehicle for the startup area development signed the Concession Agreement and Development Agreement (CADA) and the Shareholders Agreement for the development of 6.84 sq km area (1691 acres) in three phases over the next 15 years.

The Singapore consortium will have 52 per cent and ADC 48 per cent stake in ADP, which will take up development projects in 656 acres in the first phase in the next five years.

On May 15 last year, the state government handed over the Letter of Award for development of the startup area to the Singapore consortium of Ascendas-Singbridge and Sembcorp Development after it was chosen as the master developer through the ‘Swiss Challenge method.’

But reportedly no work was taken up in the last 13 months though it was targeted to create a real-estate space of 8.07 lakh sq ft in three years (from 2017).

Speaking about the delay in execution of the project, the Singapore minister said: “While there are many visions and plans that we have so far announced, to get them executed, we need these legal entities and the contracts to be properly secured. That has taken some time.”

“Now that we have got these, the companies, in partnership with their counterparts in AP, are ready to move forward and we will be starting with the Welcome Centre project. We made steady progress and are on the cusp of seeing some progress on ground,” Iswaran added.

Development of the startup area is expected to spur wide economic activity as the Singapore consortium will help attract foreign investment that will enable job creation, the Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority, overseeing the project, said.

The CRDA said 1.25 lakh families are expected to settle in the new capital in the next 15 years as 2.50 lakh jobs will be created.

The start-up area, once developed, is expected to contribute Rs 1.15 lakh crore to the state’s gross domestic product and generate a revenue of Rs 8,000 crore to Rs 10,000 crore to the government in different taxes.

The consortium will also try to get industrial and economic clusters set up in the startup area, according to the CRDA. Earlier, the Singapore minister chaired a meeting of the Joint Implementation Steering Committee along with Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and discussed the way forward.

Top officials from Singapore and Andhra Pradesh governments were present.

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