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Major Disinvestments Before March 31: Arun Jaitley

The government will go for major disinvestment in the next two-and-a-half months and will strive to stick to the fiscal deficit target of 4.1 per cent in the current year, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said.
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File photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley
File photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley

Mumbai: The government will go for major disinvestment in the next two-and-a-half months and will strive to stick to the fiscal deficit target of 4.1 per cent in the current year, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said.

"As far as disinvestment figures are concerned, we still have close to three months left. And I can only tell you this is going to be period of great activity as far as disinvestment is concerned," he said at an event.

"I am not going to give any indication but major disinvestment in the coming months prior to March 31 is going to take place," he added.

In 2014-15, the government has sold a 5 per cent stake in steel major SAIL and raked in Rs 1,700 crore. It is racing against time to meet its disinvestment target of Rs 43,425 crore for this fiscal year. Blue-chip companies like ONGC, NHPC and Coal India has been lined up for disinvestment.

In addition, it is also targeting Rs 15,000 crore from sale of residual stakes in private companies in this fiscal year.

On the 4.1 per cent fiscal deficit target, Mr Jaitley said all efforts will be made to stick to the target fixed by the previous government as it concerns the credibility of the country's financial accounting system.

Replying to questions of economic growth, the Finance Minister said 2015 is going to be a much better year than earlier years, though not fully satisfactory because there is a lot of "legacy of the past".

"Regrettably reforms in 2015 have also meant clearing up the mess left behind in the last few years...the next year certainly will be much better. And hopefully with the inflation substantially under control, we hope to see a better tomorrow as far as (interest) rates are concerned and that's also going to help," he added.

On recent ordinances issued by the government, he said government would introduce the bills for them in the Lok Sabha. He also expressed hope that some of them would be easily cleared by Parliament.

However, he added government will adopt the constitutional process of a joint session to get them approved in case they are stalled in the Rajya Sabha.



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