Govt to sell stake in ONGC, BHEL to raise Rs14,500 crore in FY11-12

The government is moving ahead with plans of disinvestment in blue-chips through the auction route to raise about Rs14,500 crore within the current fiscal itself. While the ONGC stake sale is expected to yield Rs12,000 crore, the BHEL might fetch the government about Rs2,500 crore

New Delhi: The government is moving ahead with plans of disinvestment in blue-chips— ONGC and BHEL—through the auction route to raise about Rs14,500 crore within the current fiscal itself, reports PTI.

The decision on stake sale is likely to be taken at a meeting of the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) on 15th February, according to sources.

While the ONGC stake sale through the auction route is expected to yield Rs12,000 crore, the BHEL might fetch the government about Rs2,500 crore.

According sources, the exact amount of disinvestment and the price would be decided by the EGoM, which is headed by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee.

“The Department of Disinvestment (DoD) has sent the paper for ONGC stake sale to finance minister and a reply is expected within 2-3 days,” official sources said.

As regards ONGC, the government proposes to sell 5% equity through the auction route that allows promoters to dilute their stake in the company.

The government holds a 74.14% stake in ONGC and post the 5% stake sale, its holding would come down to 69.14%. At the current market price of Rs280 a piece, the stake sale would fetch the government Rs12,000 crore.

In case of BHEL, the government is likely to offload 10% stake.

Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has issued norms allowing promoters to sell stake by way of auction, through a separate window on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National Stock Exchange (NSE) that has to be completed within a day.

Earlier this month, the EGoM met to decide on the route for ONGC disinvestment, but the meeting remained inconclusive.

It also did not discuss BHEL disinvestment as heavy industries and public enterprises minister Praful Patel was not present.

The government had envisaged to raise Rs40,000 crore in the current fiscal through PSU disinvestment, but with over 10 months already over it could mop up only Rs1,145 crore.


Tough resistance ahead: Monday Closing Report

Nifty should cross 5,430 to for the uptrend to regain strength. If not, it would be narrow sideways movement

A high degree of volatility saw the market fluctuate in and out of the red till noon trade, after which support from the European bourses lifted the domestic benchmarks to their day’s high in late trade. However, profit booking at higher levels saw the indices paring most of those gains, but closing in the green.

We had mentioned in our Friday’s closing report that the indices have lost the strength to make any major move. For the past three trading days (including today) the Nifty has been moving in the range of 5,339 and 5,428. The index will have to cross the level of 5,430 to see the uptrend regaining strength. However, if it fails, we may see a major correction. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw 75.27 crore being traded on the bourse today.

The market opened on a flat note despite a firming trend in the Asian bourses following approval of austerity measures by the Greek government, a requirement to receive a fresh bailout package. The Nifty opened unchanged at 5,382 and the Sensex added 13 points to its previous close to resume trade at 17,762.

However, profit-booking by institutional investors soon led the indices into the negative terrain. The market continued to fluctuate on both sides of the neutral line in subsequent trade. The market touched its lows in noon trade as selling pressure became intense. At the lows, the Nifty fell to 5,351 and the Sensex slipped to 17,666.

Bargain hunting by investors at lower levels induced some momentum, resulting in the indices emerging into the green albeit still under pressure. The gains were supported by the key European markets, which were seen with gains of nearly 1% in early trade.

Extending its gains further, the market hit its intraday high in late trade with the Nifty rising to 5,421 and the Sensex touching 17,850. However, the market pared most of its gains and closed marginally in the green. The Nifty added nine points to settle at 5,390 and the Sensex gained 24 points to finish trade at 17,773.

The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was 776:725.

Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index gained 0.46% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.18%.

In the sectoral space, BSE Metal (up 1.01%); BSE Auto (up 0.84%); BSE Consumer Durables (up 0.61%); BSE Bankex (up 0.36%) and BSE Healthcare (up 0.35%) were the top gainers. The losers were BSE Capital Goods (down 0.75%); BSE TECk (down 0.34%); BSE IT (down 0.26%) and BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (down 0.05%).

The Sensex was led by Hero MotoCorp (up 2.41%); Tata Steel (up 2.13%); Sun Pharma (up 2.08%); Hindalco Industries (up 1.90%) and Mahindra & Mahindra (up 1.79%). Wipro (down 2.57%); Tata Power (down 2.48%); State Bank of India (down 2%); Cipla (down 1.88%) and Larsen & Toubro (down 1.66%) settled at the bottom of the index.

The main Nifty gainers were Reliance Infrastructure (up 5.18%); Sesa Goa (up 4.47%); Kotak Mahindra Bank (up 4.08%); Tata Steel (up 2.16%) and Hero MotoCorp (up 2%). The key losers were SAIL (down 3.27%); Wipro (down 2.86%); Tata Power (down 2.71%); Cipla (down 2.47%) and SBI (down 2.16%).

Markets in Asia, with the exception of the Shanghai Composite, settled higher on optimism from Europe. Greek policymakers approved the austerity bill Monday to secure a second EU/IMF bailout and avoid national bankruptcy, even as riots broke out across Athens and violence spread around the country. Meanwhile, Japanese gross domestic product (GDP) fell to 0.6% in the December quarter, impacted by the debt crisis in Europe.

The Hang Seng rose 0.50%; the Jakarta Composite surged 1.27%; the KLSE Composite added 0.07%; the Nikkei 225 gained 0.58%; the Straits Times climbed 0.55%; the Seoul Composite advanced 0.60% and the Taiwan Weighted settled 0.64% higher. Bucking the trend, the Shanghai Composite lost 0.01%. At the time of writing, the key European markets were trading in the positive and the US stock futures were in the green.

Back home, buying by foreign institutional investors is reducing. They were net buyers of shares amounting to Rs196.12 crore on Friday while domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities totalling Rs49.30 crore.

IT services major HCL Technologies on Monday said it has bagged an infrastructure management services contract from Norway-based Statoil. As part of the deal, HCL will deliver services across 36 countries handling end-to-end monitoring and management of Statoil’s entire IT infrastructure across all global locations, including offshore production sites. The stock fell 0.26% to close at Rs467.50 on the NSE.

Simbhaoli Sugars’ board of directors has approved the proposal to raise fresh capital by way of issue of 60,00,000 equity shares on a preferential basis and to issue 16,00,000 share warrants convertible into equity shares to specified promoters of the company. The stock declined 1.96% to settle at Rs37.50 on the NSE.

Steel Strips Wheels (SSWL) has bagged order from Renault-Nissan for export to Renault-Nissan Morocco plant. The total value of the order is nearly Rs225 crore spanning over five years. Supplies would begin in third quarter of 2013. SSWL is confident of getting more business in coming months from Renault-Nissan and other European customers. Steel Strips zoomed 6.34% to close at Rs233 on the NSE.


Indians have over $500 billion in banks abroad: CBI

“It is estimated that around $500 billion of illegal money belonging to Indians is deposited in tax havens abroad. Largest depositors in Swiss banks are also reported to be Indians,” CBI director AP Singh said at the inauguration of first Interpol global programme on anti-corruption and asset recovery

New Delhi: Indians are the largest depositors in banks abroad with an estimated $500 billion (nearly Rs24.5 lakh crore) of illegal money stashed by them in tax havens, reports PTI quoting Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director AP Singh.

India, in particular, has suffered from the flow of illegal funds to tax havens such as Mauritius, Switzerland, Lichtenstein, British Virgin Islands, etc.

“It is estimated that around $500 billion of illegal money belonging to Indians is deposited in tax havens abroad. Largest depositors in Swiss banks are also reported to be Indians,” CBI director AP Singh said speaking at the inauguration of first Interpol global programme on anti-corruption and asset recovery.

He said getting information about such illegal transactions is a time taking process as investigators have to peel each layer by sending judicial requests to the country where such deposits have been made.

“53% of the countries said to be least corrupt by the Transparency International Index are offshore tax havens, where most of the corrupt money goes. The tax havens include New Zealand which is ranked as the least corrupt country, Singapore ranked number five and Switzerland number seven,” Mr Singh said.

He said there is a lack of political will in the leading tax haven states to part with the information because they are aware of the extent to which their economies have become “geared to this flow of illegal capitals from the poorer countries.”

The CBI director said tracing, freezing, confiscation and repatriation of stolen assets is a legal challenge, a complex process which requires expertise and political will.

“Managing the asset recovery investigation is complex, time consuming, costly and most importantly requires expertise and political will. There are many obstacles to asset recovery. Not only is it a specialised legal process filled with delays and uncertainty, but there are also language barriers and a lack of trust when working with other countries,” Mr Singh said.

He said global financial markets allow money to travel faster and further making tracking the money trail in such cases even more difficult which necessitates the organisation of such global training programs as they enhance the knowledge of investigators in tracking assets created out of corrupt and criminal acts.

Mr Singh said criminals are using the territorial issues of investigating agencies to their advantage by spreading their crimes to at least two countries and investing in a third.

“In some of the recent important cases being investigated by the CBI such as 2G, CWG and Madhu Koda, we find that money is taken to Dubai/Singapore/Mauritius from where it goes to Switzerland and other such tax havens.

“For criminals all it involves is setting up of a few shell companies and then making layered transfers from one account to another in a matter of hours as there are no boundaries in banking transactions,” he said.

He said the World Bank estimates the cross-border flow of money from criminal activities and tax evasion is around $1.5 trillion of which $40 billion is bribe paid to government servants in developing countries.

Mr Singh quoted the report to say that only $5 billion of this money has been repatriated during 15 years.




5 years ago

All concerned parties including Gvts and law agencies seem to be helpless and throwing up their hands in despair, some conveniently and others helplessly. Why not persuade the United Nations to take up the matter seriously and more aggressively? While we do not have the muscle and political will that US has, we can at least learn from them. This is a cancer common to all mankind but the most affected parts are in the third world. Thank God, at least media is waking up.

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