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Govt asks PSUs for help, eyes additional Rs 7,000 cr dividend payout to meet target

PTI     January 25, 2012
Hard-pressed for funds, the government is looking to garner an additional Rs 7,000 crore by persuading state-owned companies to increase their dividend payout for FY12, taking the total collection in the current fiscal to over Rs 30,000 crore.

In addition, the government expects to rake in Rs 1,500 crore through Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT) in the current financial year.

"(We are) looking at garnering Rs 7,000 crore higher dividend payment by PSU companies and Rs 1,500 crore as dividend tax distribution tax (DDT)", a senior Finance Ministry official said here.

Senior officials of the Finance Ministry led by Secretary of Economic Affairs (DEA) R Gopalan have held a series of consultations with the heads of state-owned enterprises, including PSU banks, to persuade them to raise the dividend payout to the government.

During 2010-11, the government collected Rs 25,978 crore as dividend from public sector enterprises. The target for the current financial year was pegged at Rs 23,495 crore.

The government has been facing financial problems on account of its rising subsidy bill and poor receipt from disinvestment and the fiscal deficit for 2011-12 is expected to exceed the budget target of 4.6 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Disinvestment in PSUs has yielded only about Rs 1,145 crore this year through the sale of equity in Power Finance Corporation (PFC), against the target of Rs 40,000 crore for 2011-12.

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee has informed Parliament that the subsidy bill for FY12 is likely to exceed the Budget estimate by Rs 1 lakh crore.

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