The Centre’s dividend receipts from the CPSEs’ other investments have touched Rs 52,299 crore so far in the current fiscal, as against the FY23 revised estimate (RE) of Rs 43,000 crore.
On Tuesday, Hindustan Zinc (HZL), in which the government has 29.54% stake, had announced a fourth interim dividend of `26 per equity share, i.e. 1,300%, on a face value of Rs 2 per share. The record date for payment of the dividend by HZL is March 29 and this would fetch the Centre around Rs 3,245 crore.
The Department of Investment & Public Asset Management (DIPAM) will manage to reach its revenue mobilisation target of Rs 93,000 crore in FY23, despite the shortfall expected in disinvestment receipts.
Higher dividends by the central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) would cushion the combined receipts from disinvestment and dividends. The DIPAM oversees disinvestment and dividend receipts. “Put together, disinvestment plus dividend receipts, the DIPAM will creep near the total revised estimate target of Rs 93,000 crore,” a senior official told FE.
The Centre had raised its dividend receipts target from CPSEs and other investments (excluding banks) to `43,000 crore in the RE for FY23 from Rs 40,000 crore in the year’s Budget estimate (BE). However, it had cut its disinvestment revenue target by 23% to Rs 50,000 crore in the FY23RE from Rs 65,000 crore in the BE.
Disinvestment receipts stood at Rs 31,106 crore so far in FY23 or 62% of the RE.
As the government is unlikely to sell a portion of its residual stake in HZL by end-March, a shortfall is expected from the RE target of Rs 50,000 crore.
While a few more CPSEs are expected to release dividends before end-March, the government could also undertake a few smaller disinvestment transactions to bridge the gap in disinvestment receipts as much as possible.
In an office memorandum, the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) recently asked finance heads of all departments to keep close track of receipts (tax, non-tax and disinvestment receipts), expenditures and involving fiscal position of the Central government in the month of March, on a day-to-day basis.
Economic affairs secretary Ajay Seth told FE a few days ago that the Centre will achieve its fiscal deficit target of 6.4% of GDP for FY23, even though there could be some variations on some revenue and expenditure heads.