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Non-operational units of Cement Corp to be put on block first

NEW DELHI, Jan 15: The heavy industries ministry is chalking out a plan to sell off seven non-operational units of Cement Corporation of India (CCI) in the initial phase as part of strategic sale of the loss-making state-owned firm.

As some of the CCI units are plagued by legal issues, the efforts will be to go in for unit-by-unit sale or club a cluster of them and hit the auction route, said Heavy Industries Secretary Girish Shankar.

“The proposal is basically to sell unit by unit or a group of units as not all can be sold because of some legal impediments. So, based on legal clarity, we will sell those and it will be fully disinvested,” Shankar said.

“Out of 10 units, 7 are not working, 3 are working. So, those first 7 will decide how many can be hived off, and they will be sold totally, disinvested totally.”

The Union Cabinet in October gave in-principle approval to NITI Aayog’s proposal for strategic sale of state-owned firms and entrusted DIPAM with the task of finalising PSUs in which management control can be transferred to private players.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had earlier said the names of PSUs that are up for strategic stake sale would be made public on a case-to-case basis once the Cabinet decides to put them up for auction.

According to official sources, Cement Corporation of India is among the PSUs cleared for strategic sale.

The government is eyeing Rs 20,500 crore via strategic stake sale of PSUs. But Jaitley had maintained that it would not be in a rush to sell the companies.

CCI was incorporated as a company wholly owned by the central government on January 18, 1965, with the principal objective of achieving self-sufficiency in cement production. It is a non-engineering enterprise under the administrative control of the heavy industries ministry. (PTI)

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