A Cabinet note has been floated by the newly-created Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (Dipam) to this end, a media report...
quoting officials said.
The Cabinet is likely to take a call on the matter shortly. Even some profitable PSUs will be divested.
The key criterion is that none of them are engaged in areas that are strategically critical for India.
The proposal draws from the Niti Aayog report on strategic disinvestment in profit-making PSUs.
It had identified the PSUs that will be put up for sale and is expected to work jointly with Dipam to take the plan forward. The proposed sell-off programme has a two-pronged strategy.
In so far as unlisted PSUs are concerned, the government will exit completely, offering 100 percent equity. In the case of listed ones, the government will lower its holding to less than 49 percent to free them from state control.
The government’s mandate on the plan is very strict and aimed at delivering substantial progress by the end of the financial year.
Of the FY17 disinvestment target of Rs 56,500 crore, the government has so far got Rs 22,000 crore through various modes including buybacks.
Unlisted PSUs in the list include Certification Engineers International Ltd, which offers third-party consultancy, inspection and audit services in oil and gas.
Hindustan Newsprint and Scooters India Ltd are also on the list. Selling off the three loss-making plants of the Steel Authority of India will help improve the valuation of the profitable part of the company.
Container Corporation is a profit making, zero-debt PSU worth more than Rs 25,000 crore in market capitalisation. PSUs like Air India are also on the radar but a decision on the national carrier will be taken after a while. This is because a revival package is under implementation at Air India and the government would like to see how this runs before taking a call.