[Answered] Highlight the multiplier effect of expressways?

Introduction: Contextual introduction.
Body: Explain some multiplier effects of expressways.
Conclusion: Write a way forward.

The road transport has emerged as a dominant segment with a share of 4.8 per cent in India’s GDP. India has the second-largest road network globally, spanning a total of 5.89 million km. Bharatmala Pariyojana aims to develop 34,800 km of NH corridors. As of now, 11,789 km has been completed in the project.

Multiplier effects of expressways:

  • It reduces the commute time. The longer the commute time in a city, the smaller will be its effective labour market.
  • The research has shown the immediate positive effects that transit networks in India have had on employment, especially in rural India and the country’s manufacturing growth. Over the long term, even regions farther away from major roads develop in line with the development witnessed by areas along national highways. Such a spillover of growth is essential to reduce the inequities in regional development in a country like India.
  • Capital expenditureis known to have a powerful multiplier effect of approx. 2.95 times.
  • It will boost domestic tourism. Tourism has a multiplier impact e.g. Gramin Haats along the expressway can provide local farmers and craftsman a new window of opportunity.
  • It facilitates increased productivity and efficiency, improves basic services’ access as well as attracts investment and promotes socio-economic development for people living around highways, including education, healthcare, buildings for public use, shopping complexes etc.
  • It results in annual fuel savings, reducing CO2 emissions and creates employment for thousands.
  • Connectivity to unconnected hinterland hamlets can ensure Agri produce reaches main markets and hubs. This can ensure inclusive development as well as promote the food processing industry.

A robust road network will be one important pillar in India’s speedy economic recovery. The government should also revisit its PPP models to attract more private sector investment in new asset development.

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