Stake sale in 4 PSUs would fetch govt Rs22,574 crore: Sinha

The government expects to raise as much as Rs22,574 crore ($3.6 billion) from the sale of equity in four state-run firms, including Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and National Aluminium Co Ltd (Nalco), minister of state for finance Jayant Sinha said today.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has already approved the sale of 5 per cent stake each in ONGC and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd, and 10 per cent each in Nalco and NMDC Ltd, which may fetch the exchequer Rs 22,574 crore, Sinha informed the Lok Sabha in a written reply today.

Based on the current stock price, the sale of five per cent equity capital in ONGC could yield Rs13,217 crore and a 5 per cent stake sale in BHEL could yield as much as Rs3,129 crore while the 10 per cent stake sale in NMDC and Nalco each would fetch the government approximately Rs5,038 crore and Rs1,190 crore, respectively, the minister stated.

The government has so far received Rs24,200 crore from disinvestment of shares in state-owned companies in the 2014-15 financial year. The government had to revise down the stake-sale target in state-run and private companies by more than half against an earlier estimate of about Rs62,500 crore.

In the budget for 2015-16 presented last month, finance minister Arun Jaitley had set a target of raising Rs69,500 crore ($11.1 billion) through sale of shares in state-run companies in the fiscal year beginning 1 April.

Disinvestment is one of the ways to contain fiscal deficit, Sinha said, adding that the government proposes to reduce fiscal deficit to 3.9 per cent of GDP in 2015-16 from 4.1 per cent in the current financial year.

"Government takes various revenue raising measures that have an impact on fiscal deficit and disinvestment is one of them.

"Listing and disinvestment of CPSEs, in general, has been seen to improve efficiency of CPSEs. CPSEs also take a number of measures for enhancing their efficiency," Sinha added.