New Delhi : Asked to garner a massive Rs 69,500 crore this fiscal, the Department of Disinvestment has told Finance Ministry it may be able to raise only about Rs 30,000 crore given the volatile market conditions. Terming Rs 30,000 crore as a more “realistic” target, the Department has said that a higher target was becoming “counter-productive” in framing of a strategy for sale of shares due to market volatility.
The red flag has been raised even as the government earlier this week raised Rs 1,600 crore from a highly subscribed share sale in Power Finance Corporation (PFC). If achieved, Rs 30,000 crore would still be the highest-ever disinvestment kitty in a year for the government.
Although the government has missed its divestment target for five years in a row, the target for the current fiscal 2015-16 was set at a massive Rs 69,500 crore — 180 % higher than the total amount garnered from PSU share sales in the previous fiscal. “Unavailability of high-value stocks adds to the constraint. Rs 30,000 crore is a realistic target in this market condition which has been conveyed (to the Finance Ministry),” a highly-placed source told PTI. Of the targeted Rs 69,500 crore, Rs 41,000 crore was to come from minority stake sale in PSUs and further Rs 28,500 crore from strategic stake sales. “With this target, the growth rate in disinvestment proceeds would need to be around 180 %. This is much higher than the tax revenue growth rate of 16 % and that of Government bonds of 10 %,” the source said.
In 2014-15, the government raised around Rs 25,000 crore against the target of Rs 58,425 crore.
For disinvestment in 2015-16, the government has a pipeline of over 20 PSUs for which it has cabinet approval. This includes, 10 % stake sale each in OIL, IOC, Nalco, NMDC, besides, 5 % in NTPC, ONGC, BHEL.