Data Of 7 Crore+ Bharat Petroleum Customers Will Be Sold To Private Firms As Part Of Privatization
India has allowed bidders access to the financial data of Bharat Petroleum Corp. as the government moves ahead with plans to sell its entire stake in the country’s second-biggest state refiner, according to people familiar with the matter.
According to one of the people who asked not to be named because the talks are private, the data room has been open since the last week of April, and some bidders have met with BPCL management.
Shares In BPCL Erased Losses
Following the Bloomberg News article, BPCL shares in Mumbai recovered their losses, rising as much as 3% to their highest level since March 16. Based on Friday’s closing price, the government’s 53 per cent interest in the refinery is worth around 509 billion rupees ($6.9 billion).
For India, the BPCL privatisation, which could be the country’s largest, is critical. The government needs to collect money to compensate for the drop in tax revenues caused by the pandemic.
Earlier Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said there is no going back on the decision to privatise the country’s largest oil marketing company BPCL given the slump in global energy prices.
“Whether the government is revisiting disinvestment of BPCL, my answer is very clear no. The government is very firm on one issue (that) government has no business to be in the business,” he said.
Covid-19 Outbreak Might Slow Down The Selling Process
Despite a new wave of coronavirus infection, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said last month that the plan to raise around $23 billion by selling stakes in state-run firms, including BPCL, is still on track.
Based on Friday’s trading price, the government’s 53 per cent interest in BPCL is worth around 496 billion rupees ($6.7 billion). As of 2:02 p.m. in Mumbai, shares in the refiner were down about 0.6 per cent.
One of the people said that the recent Covid-19 outbreak might still slow down the selling process. A spokesperson for the finance ministry refused to comment, and a spokesperson for BPCL did not respond to requests for comment right away.