He said the government expects Rs 50,000 crore in dividends from public sector companies in the current financial year and is also working on a Rs 6 trillion asset monetisation plan and hopes to come out with plans for GAIL pipelines soon.
“The disinvestment agenda has been put on fast track through the unveiling of the new PSE (public sector enterprises) policy, notified on February 4, 2021, which is expected to be an important policy for the next five years and will result in increase in privatisation in the economy”, Pandey told an interaction at the annual session of CII.
He said the major disinvestments in pipeline this year as underlined in the Union Budget, include Air India, BPCL, Shipping Corporation of India, BEML, Pawan Hans and Neelachal Ispat Nigam and in all these enterprises, the government has got sufficient interest from bidders, who are now at the second stage of due-diligence.
“After 17 years, the country will actually see privatisation, since the last time in 2003-04 in the then NDA government,” said Pandey. He also reiterated that the government aims to list state-run insurance behemoth LIC by year-end. “A mega listing in LIC is planned this year, which will be the biggest of its kind in history of Indian stock market.”
The Centre has set a target of raising Rs 1.75 lakh crore from privatisation of state run enterprises in the current fiscal and Pandey said the process had been significantly impacted by the second Covid-19 wave, although it was back on track now.
“A big asset monetisation pipeline is in place where the government looks forward to private sector participation. The government is also talking about closure of enterprises quite openly for the first time, in case it cannot be disinvested. In the non-strategic sectors, the direction is that either we privatise or close. Hence, apart from NCLT, there will also be a lot of assets on offer from the public sector.”