Shapoorji Pallonji Bags ITPO Contract

Construction major Shapoorji Pallonji has pipped L&T to bag the government's Rs.2,600-crore project to redevelop the ITPO complex in the national capital into an exhibition-cum-convention centre. The India Trade Promotion Organisation complex at Pragati Maidan has been a venue for global events such as the India International Trade Fair, World Book Fair and Petrotech.

The Centre plans to host the flagship auto expo and other mega events like the G20 meetings once the property is redeveloped. Shapoorji Pallonji will have two years to finish the job.

The redevelopment project includes creation of a state-of-the-art convention centre with a capacity to seat 7,000 people, almost five times the capacity of Vigyan Bhawan, the government's premier convention centre.

As per the contract, the company will also have to build meeting halls, lounges and create basement parking space for about 4,800 cars. Capacity addition for exhibition space of abo ut 80,000 sq m along with supporting infrastructure is envisaged for later.

ITPO will pump in about half the amount from its reserves and fund the balance of the project through long term loan from banks and financial institutions with government guarantee, or through soft loans, external aid and land monetisation.

ITPO, a mini-ratna public sector undertaking under the commerce ministry , runs the exhibition centre which was inaugurated in 1972 by former prime minister Indira Gandhi.

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