Govt to speed up PSU stake sale process: PM

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the government will speed up the stake sale process in public sector enterprises to help revive equity markets.

"We will speed up the disinvestment process which will also revive our equity markets," Singh said at the FICCI AGM.

So far this fiscal, the government has raised over Rs 6,900 crore by way of divesting stake in PSUs.

While the government realised Rs 125 crore by way of selling 10 per cent in NBCC, a 5.58 per cent stake sale in Hindustan Copper (HCL) fetched Rs 808 crore to the exchequer. This week the government raised Rs 6,000 crore by selling 10 per cent stake in NMDC.

The government plans to raise Rs 30,000 crore in the current fiscal by way of selling minority stakes in PSUs. It has already identified 10 companies, including NTPC, Oil India, SAIL and MMTC, for the purpose.

Revenue realisation from disinvestment is essential for the government to restrict the fiscal deficit to 5.3 per cent of GDP in the current fiscal.

The Centre's fiscal deficit touched a high of 5.9 per cent in the previous fiscal. "This was clearly unsustainable," Singh said, adding that the Finance Minister has unveiled a fiscal consolidation roadmap to bring down the deficit to 3 per cent by 2016-17.

"The government is serious about moving in this direction," Singh said.

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