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PPP and PU dispute resolution Bill likely in House session: Das

The government is likely to introduce a bill for dispute resolution in PPP projects and public utility contracts in the upcoming Parliament session, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das said on Friday. The Budget 2016-17 had proposed a Public Utility (Resolution of Disputes) Bill to streamline institutional arrangements for resolution of disputes in infrastructure related construction contracts, PPP and public utility contracts.

“We are working on that public utility dispute resolution bill. We are trying best to introduce in...Budget Session, but we need to complete a lot of work. The draft is ready. It’s is our endeavour to introduce it in Budget session, but if not then it will be certainly introduced in monsoon session of Parliament,” Das said at an event here.

The second leg of the Budget session will begin later this month during which the demands for grants and Finance Bill 2016 will be taken up for consideration and passage. The enactment of the public utility bill would provide a legal framework for speedier resolution of disputes in PPP projects. The new law will deal with construction contracts, PPP contracts or any other contract which involves a public utility authority and a private contractor. Moreover,  asserting that India is moving towards a low interest rate regime, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das said banks are expected to cut interest rates over the next few days in light of the recent monetary policy easing by RBI.

“Banks are autonomous and the government has given very strong signal by maintaining the fiscal deficit at 3.5 per cent and resetting small savings rates. RBI has reduced the policy rate by 25 basis points. One would expect banks to take a policy call and I am sure they would do it in days and weeks to come,” he said on the sidelines of an event here. The Reserve Bank, in its first bi-monthly policy review of the current fiscal on April 5, cut interest rate by 0.25 per cent and introduced a host of measures to smoothen liquidity supply to help banks lend more money to productive sectors and indicated an accommodative stance, going ahead.

Banks are now also expected to do effective transmission of rates, he said, adding that part of it has already been done by adopting the Marginal Cost of Funds-based Lending Rate (MCLR) and reducing the rate of interest marginally. 
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