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NPCIL, Antrix Corp, PowerGrid, BHEL among PSUs that may escape privatisation: Sources

Sources added that the govt’s new privatisation policy will have as many as 16 strategic sectors where the Centre will retain one to four PSUs

Sources added that the govt’s new privatisation policy will have as many as 16 strategic sectors where the Centre will retain one to four PSUs.
Sources added that the govt’s new privatisation policy will have as many as 16 strategic sectors where the Centre will retain one to four PSUs.
  • Speaking to PSU Watch, DIPAM Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey said that the new privatisation policy is set to be unveiled soon

  • The list of non-strategic sectors is likely to include hotel and tourism services, trading and marketing, industrial and consumer goods and transport and logistics

New Delhi: State-run NPCIL (Nuclear Power Corporation of India), Antrix Corporation, PowerGrid and BHEL are likely to be among the PSUs which are not on the government’s privatisation list, sources in the know of the matter told PSU Watch on the condition of anonymity. In addition, NHAI (National Highways Authority of India), FCI (Food Corporation of India), and SECI (Solar Energy Corporation of India) are also expected to be under complete control of the government as they are involved in functions that are inseparable from flagship government policies, sources said on Monday.

They added that the government’s new privatisation policy will have as many as 16 strategic sectors where the Centre has said already that it will retain one to four PSUs (public sector undertakings). 

New privatisation policy to be unveiled soon: DIPAM Secretary

Speaking to PSU Watch, DIPAM (Department of Investment and Public Asset Management) Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey said that the new privatisation policy is set to be unveiled soon. Whereas he declined to comment on how soon it will be, sources said that the policy is likely to be revealed by the end of this month. In line with the announcement made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in May, a maximum of one to four PSUs will be within the government’s control in each strategic sector, while the rest will be privatised or wound up (if they are loss-making) in due course. In the strategic sectors, the government will go for either privatisation or mergers and consolidations. Some of the strategic sectors that are likely to see further mergers/consolidations or disinvestment are petroleum refining and marketing, crude exploration, power generation, coal and metals.

One of the sources quoted above said that along with Niti Aayog, DIPAM is now part of the process of framing a new privatisation policy, which is a departure from the previous trend. Earlier, Niti Aayog was primarily responsible for framing policies related to disinvestment. The source also said that a Cabinet note prepared by DIPAM and Niti Ayog on the policy has already been circulated.

Non-strategic sector

The list of non-strategic sectors is likely to include hotel and tourism services, trading and marketing, industrial and consumer goods and transport and logistics. This essentially means that the ITDC network of four Ashoka Group of Hotels, and STC and MMTC may go under the hammer. The government has already initiated the sale process of CONCOR, Air India and SCI in the transport and logistics sector. The privatisation plan announced by the Centre is the biggest privatisation plan undertaken by any regime ever in India.

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