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FM Nirmala Sitharaman: says govt is not hurrying to "sell off everything"

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She said that if possible, we will try to merge them so that they form a bigger unit, a sustainable unit, a unit that can manage its own needs."

The government will merge them and create a larger entity that can stay there, she said.

Sitharaman announced in the recent Budget that the government will raise ₹51,000 crore by divesting stakes in various public sector companies in FY24. This is slightly more than the current year ending on March 31, 2023.

In the previous budget, the government aimed to raise ₹65,000 crore through divestments, which was later revised to ₹50,000 crore. 

Currently, the government is working on the privatisation of several central public sector enterprises, such as IDBI Bank, Shipping Corporation of India, NMDC Steel, BEML, HLL Lifecare, Container Corporation of India and Vizag Steel.

Disinvestment process for these companies have already begun and are at different stages and are expected to be completed in the next fiscal if the target of ₹51,000 crore is to be achieved.

The government has failed to meet its disinvestment target for the last four years.

On asset monetisation , Sitharaman said it is being promoted so that assets which are not optimally generating revenues are used to generate income for the government or its entities.

Monetisation does not mean selling or giving away assets for free but a certain value is assessed and accordingly put to productive use , she said , adding , asset monetization would continue .

She said what gives her confidence that India’s growth would be intact is “we have the right mix of things that matter for a growing economy-- a middle class , captive market with purchasing power , tech-driven public investment and product and digital infrastructure ”.

In addition, she stated, India has a legal system that ensures fairness to its people and business despite delays.

During the most recent G20 conference, India offered to create an expert panel to discuss whether multilateral development institutions could address the challenges of the twenty-first century, she added. India has been discussing the need for change in international organisations.

On climate funding, the finance minister claimed that there is more openness to talking about the needs of the developing world.

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