New Delhi, May 17: India plans to provide 50 diesel locomotives on lease to Pakistan, which is facing an acute shortage of engines.
"A team of officials from Pakistan had met the Indian counterparts and broad consensus emerged on leasing the locomotives. The finer details will be worked out soon," a senior railway ministry official said.
Officials of Pakistan Railways Advisory and Consultancy Services Ltd had recently held discussions with RITES Ltd.
The railways may provide locomotives on lease at the rate of Rs 1,500 per hour per engine of 3,000 Horse Power, the official said.
"We sell locomotives on purchase basis to other countries but this will be for the first time that we are considering to give it on hiring. Pakistan Railways prefers leasing to buying," the official said.
If the deal is finalised, it will be for the first time that the Indian Railways will offer services to Pakistan.
The railways had earlier supplied locomotives to Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Myanmar, Mozambique, Tanzania and Ghana.
Of the 520 locomotives with Pakistan, only 70 are functional, with the rest under repair.
The Indian Railways manufactures about 250 diesel locomotives a year. It has 4,214 electric and 6,000 diesel engines in its inventory.
The government plans to offer incentives on the export of labour-intensive products such as textiles, handloom, leather and carpets and also reward diversification into new markets, commerce minister Anand Sharma told reporters today after a meeting with exporters.
The government is expected to announce sops in the foreign trade policy for 2012-13 on June 5.