Editorial

Atmanirbhar Bharat: Privatization Policy Finalized……

The Cabinet will soon take up the privatisation policy in the next 2-3 weeks, a senior government officer in the know of the development told ET Now. As part of the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’ package, the government in May had announced that there will be a maximum of four public sector companies in the strategic sectors, and state-owned firms in other segments will eventually be privatised. The privatisation policy will broadly list our strategic and non-strategic sectors. The new privatisation policy will open up a plethora of opportunities for investors to enter oil & gas, banking, mines, minerals, fertiliser and insurance sectors by buying a stake in public sector companies. Non-strategic sectors will have the government proceed with the outright sale of public sector companies. The government had budgeted for Rs 2.1 lakh crore from disinvestment proceeds for FY21 but covid-19 (?) put a spanner at works for the government’s privatisation drive.  “Financials are a strategic sector but the government’s plan is to privatise PSU banks. As many as 4-5 PSU banks should be privatised in the medium term. We are going as per plan for strategic stake sale of IDBI Bank and IPO for LIC as well,” another government source added. The government currently owns a 46.5 per cent stake in IDBI Bank. Sitharaman in the budget had proposed plans for the sale of the government’s remaining stake in IDBI Bank. The government aims to garner Rs 90,000 crore from the listing of LIC and stake dilution in IDBI Bank, out of total the disinvestment target of Rs 2.10 lakh crore during the current fiscal. The government currently owns 100 per cent in LIC. The government also wanted to sell strategic stake in oil behemoth BPCL and other PSUs like Shipping Corporation and Concor this year but Covid-19 delayed its proposed plans. Lets hope for Atmanirbhar Bharat.

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