The finance ministry has asked the Department of Disinvestment (DoD) to complete the groundwork for stake sales in state-owned companies soon after the budget to take advantage of the bull phase in the stock market.
The government is expected to retain the disinvestment target of ` 36,925 crore proposed in the interim budget for 2014-15 when it presents the final budget next month. A good realisation from the sale of shares would help keep the fiscal deficit under check.
The benchmark 30-share BSE Sensex has gained 14.5% in this financial year, with the PSU index touching a 52-week high of 9,091.04 on June 10.
“Current market conditions will offer good valuations for most PSUs. We will push for divestment of PSUs post-budget and we are doing due diligence for the same,” officials said.
The DoD has identified blue chip companies including Coal India and the Steel Authority of India for stake sales in this financial year, as well as the longpending sale of its residual stake in Hindustan Zinc and Balco, which could yield ` 15,000 crore.
DoD may also look at NHPC, Rural Electrification Corp and Power Finance Corp for stake sales.
While a 10% stake sale in Coal India and SAIL is on the cards, the DoD proposes to sell 11.6% in NHPC and 5% each in REC and PFC.