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Not sure if Bpcl divestment will end in FY 22, says Finance Secretary Tv Somanathan


Finance Secretary TV Somanathan is uncertain whether the divestiture of government-owned Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) will go through this fiscal year.

“There is a good chance that LIC divestment will take place this year. I’m not so clear in my mind about BPCL. However, we are not likely to fully meet the divestment target,” he said. he said in an exclusive interview with CNBC-TV18.

His remarks come after government sources said last week that “the situation is tense” over the divestment of BPCL without any clarity on the financial offers. Financial offers could arrive during the current fiscal year itself or could spill over into the next fiscal year, they said.

However, Tuhin Kanta Pandey, the secretary of the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management, said on November 17 that the government intends to complete the privatization of five to six state-owned companies, including Bharat. Petroleum Corp Ltd, during the current fiscal period. year.

The president of BPCL also said earlier that the Center intended to complete the divestment worth more than Rs 50,000 crore by March 2022.
However, the rating agency Fitch Ratings had predicted that the privatization of BPCL could be delayed. “Bidders perform due diligence, but uncertainty about bidding consortia and the complexity of the processes, including evaluation, can cause potential delays,” he said in September this year.

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Currently, the Center has a 52.98% stake in BPCL and the company or companies interested in buying the crude oil refiner will have to pay more than Rs 50,000 crore at current market prices.

In November 2020, several bidders, including Vedanta, Apollo Global Management and Think Gas, expressed interest in BPCL. Subsequently, in April 2021, bidders were authorized to access BPCL’s financial data to better assess the valuation.

(Edited by : Abhishek Jha)


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