“Our government is moving on both with the expectation that we can complete them in 2019. The ground realities will play out,” said Sitharaman
New Delhi: On Saturday Nirmala Sitharaman said the government would wrap up the sale of Air India and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) by March 2020, according to sources.
Sitharaman also said there is a “lot of interest” among investors about the sale of Air India has seen in the international roadshows carried out by the Government of India.
“Our government is moving on both with the expectation that we can complete them in 2019. The ground realities will play out,” said Sitharaman.
The Nirmala Sitharaman stated the strategic disinvestment of the two state-run companies is critical for the government to meet its target of Rs 1 trillion for the current fiscal year. Earlier due to lukewarm response by investors, the government had to make plans for Air India’s stake sale.
The Central government took responsibility to reverse the economic slowdown at the correct time and in many sectors are coming out of distress, the report quoted Sitharaman as saying. The finance minister added that the industry captains had contributed to improving their balance sheets and many of them were also mulling fresh investments.
Sithraraman said it is expected that GST collections to revive following an improvement in sales in some segments as well as the government’s recent efforts to plug leakages.
Finance Minister expects that taxation of Goods and Services Tax collections to bounce back citing improvement in some sectors and recent steps taken to provide a boost the economic slowdown.
The government is planning to invite bids for the national carrier by next month. The government will conduct roadshows at global financial centers such as London and Singapore to boost the investors for the disinvestment.
Union Minister of Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri in August had said that the central government was aiming for 100% privatization of Air India. Puri also claimed that “people are interested in acquiring Air India”.