MUMBAI Jan 6 India has shortlisted six banks,
including Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and Morgan
Stanley, for a selldown of state shares worth $2.3
billion in power producer NTPC Ltd, three sources with direct
knowledge of the sale said.
Others shortlisted by the Indian government's department of
disinvestment for the NTPC offering are Deutsche Bank
and India's SBI Capital Markets and Kotak Mahindra
Capital, the sources said on Sunday.
All three sources declined to be identified because they
were not authorised to speak to the media before an official
India's cabinet approved a 9.5 percent stake sale in NTPC in
November to help rein in its ballooning fiscal deficit. At
current market price, the sale could raise as much as $2.3
billion for the government.
The NTPC stake sale is likely to be completed by the end of
this month, two of the sources said.
Selling some shares in state companies is a central plank of
the government's plan to bring down a widening fiscal deficit, a
major weakness that has triggered repeated warnings of a credit
downgrade from global ratings agencies.
The government is aiming to raise $5.5 billion from such
partial privatisations in the current fiscal year that ends in
March. The faltering divestment programme got a boost from a
$1.1 billion offering of miner NMDC Ltd last month.
Before the NMDC selldown, the government had raised just
$148 million in the current fiscal year in a process hit by
volatile markets and wrangling among government officials.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said last month India would
speed up the sales to revive the stock market and would push
ahead with reforms aimed at spurring an investment recovery in
the flagging economy.
The government is also looking to offload some of its stakes
in the Steel Authority of India Ltd, NALCO
and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd over the next few
months, but has not set firm timelines.