South Korea’s $10bn Modi Pledge


South Korea has agreed to set up a US$10 billion support fund for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a bid to develop projects ranging from bullet trains, port infrastructure and smart cities, according to the New Indian Express.

PTI previously reported that India was planning to turn each of its major ports into a smart city for an estimated cost of $8 billion. South Korea’s move to spend big on various projects now seems to put India in a good position to solidify infrastructure plans.

Joon-gyu Lee, Soutb Korea’s envoy to India, said: “My country is offering India a financial package amounting to a total of $10 billion. This will comprise an economic development cooperation fund of $1 billion and export credits of another $9 billion.

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“This fund will be used to support several of Prime Minister Modi's initiatives on infrastructure development, including smart cities project, railways, power generation, transmission and also other sectors that can be agreed upon at a later stage.”

India’s most recent project entails constructing a container port at Chabahar Port in Iran. This decision was finalised despite warnings by the US to now follow through with the project.

This move also comes at a precarious time, with news that Asia’s economic performance has dipped in recent months as a result of the slump in demand for container ships, a factor which has contributed to the global shipping industry's realisation of an excess of $80 billion in debt.

(Source: The Hindu)

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