New Delhi: The government is not considering divesting its stake in power equipment maker BHEL due to present volatile market conditions, Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Praful Patel said on Friday.

"BHEL disinvestment at the moment is on hold," Patel told reporters on the sidelines of a CII function here.

"There is no immediate plan considering the current market conditions and overall mood about the power sector," the minister said.

In July 2011, the government had appointed four merchant bankers —- Morgan Stanley, DSP Merrill Lynch (Bank of America), ICICI Securities and Kotak Mahindra Capital – for Bhel's follow-on public offer.

The government, which holds 67.72 percent stake in the PSU, had approved disinvestment of five percent shareholding.

However, in April this year, BHEL had said it withdrawn the Draft Red Herring Prospectus (DRHP) for the follow-on offer filed with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), following an instruction by the Finance Ministry.

According to analysts, the move may have been influenced by the lack of enthusiasm among investors for PSU shares.

As against the disinvestment target of Rs 40,000 crore in 2011-12, the government could raise only Rs 14,000 crore through PSU stake sales.

During 2012-13, the government plans to sell equity in PSUs like SAIL, Neyveli Lignite, NMDC and Nalco to mop up Rs 30,000 crore.

Talking about central public sector enterprises' surplus land, Patel said some PSUs have a lot of land and surpluses which they can contribute to a larger pool. This will also help in industrialisation.

"It is a good idea to pool in the resources at least the land resources which can be exchanged or used by each other for a win-win situation for all," he said.


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