Among 257 operating Publis Sector Units (PSUs) in India, Indian Oil, ONGC, and Coal India have emerged as the most profitable state-owned companies, while debt-laden Air India, BSNL, and MTNL have incurred maximum losses in the same year.
According to the Public Enterprises Survey 2016-17 tabled in the Parliament on Tuesday, the losses incurred by BSNL, Air India and MTNL accounted for 55.66% of the total losses by the top ten loss-making Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs).
Meanwhile, India’s energy sector companies Indian Oil, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), and Coal India added a profit of 19.69%, 18.45% and 14.94% respectively to the total profit earned by top ten profit-making companies. While two other energy sector companies Hindustan Petroleum Corporation and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals in the year 2016-17 made it to the list of top ten profit making CPSEs.
Hindustan Petroleum Corporation and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals replaced Hindustan Fertiliser Corporation and Power Finance Corporation from the list of top 10 profit making companies. Overall the profit growth of 257 operating PSUs was 11.7%, up from Rs 1,14,239 crore in 2015-16 to Rs 1,27,602 crore in 2016-17.
It is notable that Air India has not made any profit since at least the year 2007. The national-carrier, under intense competition from leaner, more efficient and often-cheaper private airlines piled up a debt of over Rs 52,000 crore, following which the Narendra Modi government decided to strategically disinvestment its shares to private players. The disinvestment process is currently underway.
Meanwhile, government’s think-tank NITI Aayog has identified 40 sick PSUs for disinvestment. In the fiscal year 2017-18, the government, on the back of Rs 37,000 crore OGC-HPCL deal, is all set to earn Rs 1 lakh crore by strategic disinvestment as against targeted Rs 74,000 crore. Next year, the government has set the disinvestment target at Rs 80,000 crore.
The government last month also announced coal block auction for commercial mining by private companies to bring efficiency and competition in the coal sector.