Finance Ministry has moved a draft Cabinet note for inter-ministerial consultations for selling over 3.80 crore shares in GAIL through a public offer, official sources said. At current trading price of Rs 345.15 per scrip, the stake sale will fetch the government over Rs 1,300 crore. The government holds 56.11 percent stake in GAIL. Divesting 3 percent interest will help government keep its shareholding well above 51 percent - minimum strategic holding it has decided to keep in key public sector units.

With this, GAIL has joined the list of oil PSUs which the Department of Disinvestment has shortlisted for disinvestment. In June, the DoD had floated draft note for selling 3 percent stake in BPCL. While the Cabinet has already approved sale of 5 percent stake in Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and 10 percent in Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), DoD plans to sell 10 percent in Oil India (OIL) as well.

The government is targeting Rs 69,500 crore from stake sale in PSUs this fiscal. Of this, Rs 41,000 crore is to come from minority share sale in PSUs and Rs 28,500 crore from strategic stake sale.

With volatile market conditions, the government has so far this fiscal been able to divest 5 percent stake each in REC and PFC. It has raised over Rs 3,100 crore so far this fiscal. As per the Public Enterprise Survey 2013-14, India has 234 Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSE), of which 46 are listed.

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