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MTNL starts asset monetisation, aims to turn profitable in FY21

State-run MTNL has started the process to monetise assets worth Rs 23,000 cr as it looks to turn profitable in financial year 2020-2021
New Delhi: State-run MTNL (Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited) has started the process to monetise assets worth Rs 23,000 crore as it looks to turn profitable in financial year 2020-2021, CMD (Chairman and Managing Director) Sunil Kumar said on Thursday. The telecom service provider has already submitted plans to the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) to monetise assets worth Rs 6,200 crore that includes 36 acres of land bank in Mumbai, shops-cum-offices in Delhi, and residential quarters in Noida etc.

MTNL has identified assets worth Rs 23,000 cr

“We have identified assets worth Rs 23,000 crore that can be monetised. These are all prime properties in Mumbai and Delhi. We have submitted plans to monetise Rs 6,200 crore worth of assets to DIPAM. With the completion of VRS and asset monetisation, we expect to become profitable in the next fiscal,” MTNL CMD said. “MTNL has assets at all the prime locations. Residential as well as commercial complexes can be developed on these properties. Around Rs 1,000 crore worth assets have been initiated for monetisation in Delhi also,” Kumar said. He added that the BSNL subsidiary is also looking at substantially vacating the corporate office and is expecting to earn around Rs 500-600 crore per year through renting.

The backdrop

A total of 14,387 employees have applied for voluntary retirement at MTNL. This is expected to save the PSU Rs 1,700 crore in operating cost. MTNL has a total of 18,422 employees. It had posted a loss of Rs 3,388.07 crore and a revenue of Rs 2,085.41 crore in 2018-19. The PSU’s total debt stands at around Rs 20,000 crore. The government has approved a Rs 68,751-crore revival package for both the state-run telecom firms — BSNL and MTNL. The plan includes 4G spectrum allocation, voluntary retirement scheme and raising of funds via sovereign bonds and asset monetisation.