State scraps plan to sell Coal India stake -FinMin

January 7
2:19 AM 2014

The Indian government has shelved its plan to divest a 5% stake in state-run mining company Coal India Ltd, according to a finance ministry official. The unnamed official said the state will instead pour its efforts on raising funds through special dividends from the mining firm, wrote The Free Press Journal.

The finance ministry official said: "Coal India issue will not happen. It (raising money from Coal India) will be only through special dividends."

The Indian government had previously planned to sell 5% of the miner's shares. However, that plan has now been scrapped because the trade unions had persistently opposed it, the official explained. The state was hoping to raise INR95 billion from the Coal India divestment, the report said.

Coal India currently holds cash reserves of more than INR600 billion. The firm is reportedly mulling payment of special dividends priced between INR18 and INR20 for every share, The Free Press journal reported.

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