The Government has lined up plans to divest stake in at least six to seven public sector undertakings in the next 10 months, the Finance Secretary, Mr Ashok Chawla, told reporters here today.
While refusing to name the PSUs, Mr Chawla said that the six to seven proposed divestment candidates are in addition to the “existing two” for which the initial public offering (IPO) process has already been completed (NHPC) or is scheduled in the next few weeks (Oil India).
He also said that the proposal to restructure the National Investment Fund (NIF) will soon be taken to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA). The proposal is to enable the Government to use a portion of the funds that go into the NIF, out of divestment proceeds, for social programme spending.
On Government borrowing, Mr Chawla told reporters that there was no need to re-jig the borrowing programme as the income-tax department had been asked to increase tax collection targets by Rs 30,000 crore for 2009-10.
“Given the collection trend in recent years, I am confident that the revised direct tax collection target (Rs 4 lakh crore) can be achieved,” he added.
On the issue of assessment of additional expenditure due to drought conditions, Mr Chawla said that there is no full assessment as yet.
“With rains in the last two to three days, the situation has turned for the better. We have to see what the demand and the real requirement of States are,” Mr Chawla noted.
Source: The Hindu Businessline