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Govt may go ahead with 5% stake sale in CIL this month: Jaiswal

Last Updated: Thursday, August 1, 2013 - 15:44

New Delhi: The government is likely to go ahead with its proposed 5 percent stake sale in Coal India this month that is expected to fetch around Rs 10,000 crore to the exchequer, after major trade unions reached an agreement on the quantum of disinvestment.

"Coal India disinvestment may hit the market in August as three of its five major trade unions have given their consent to proceed with 5 percent stake sale in the PSU," Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal told reporters here on Wednesday.

When asked that some of the trade bodies had denied reaching any such agreement, Jaiswal said three major unions have assured the government that they will convince the remaining two unions.

The government's original plan was to sell 10 percent stake in Coal India, the world's largest coal miner, to raise Rs 20,000 crore, but the proposal met stiff resistance from trade unions who had threatened to go on strike.

After consultations with unions, the government has now decided to sell only 5 percent through open market, said Jaiswal, adding that for the remaining five percent, the government will devise some other mechanism.

"The government has already started the process of disinvestment after it halved to 5 percent the stake it planned to sell in the PSU, following a pact with the unions," he said.

Meanwhile, the Coal Ministry will again hold a meeting with the trade unions on August 5 to deliberate on some of the other issues.

CIL employees had earlier threatened to go on strike if the government went ahead with 10 percent stake sale in the PSU major.

"There is no scope for any labour unrest or strike," Jaiswal assured.

The government currently holds 90 percent stake in Coal India, valued at Rs 1,88,227 crore.

CIL got listed on bourses in 2010 through the country's biggest ever initial public offering in which the government raised Rs 15,199 crore by selling 10 percent stake.

Coal India, which accounts for over 80 percent of the domestic production has a cash balance of about Rs 60,000 crore.

CIL shares were trading at Rs 276 apiece during afternoon trade, down 1.94 percent from the previous close on the BSE.

PTI

First Published: Thursday, August 1, 2013 - 15:44
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