The Indian government is mulling to sell part or all of its stake in the nation’s third-biggest private sector lender Axis Bank Ltd for about $1.7 billion to cut down fiscal deficit and meet annual asset sales target, said a report in Bloomberg.
The government is looking to sell its entire 11.59 per cent stake in the bank through the Specified Undertaking of the Unit Trust of India as it seeks to meet an asset sale target of $10.4 billion (695 billion rupees) for the year ending March 31, 2016.
As on date, the government has managed to raise only 127 billion rupees from sale of state assets, which is less than one-fifth of the proposed target, the report said.
Indian finance minister Arun Jaitley has set the country’s fiscal deficit target for the financial year 2015-16 at 3.9 per cent of gross domestic product. He is looking to reduce the target gradually to 3 per cent by 2017-18.
Axis Bank’s net profit rose 18.93% to Rs 1915.64 crore in the quarter ended September 2015 over the same period a year ago. The bank’s total income rose 13.75% Rs 12001.01 crore in September quarter over the same period last year.