Gangtok, Nov. 25
The 13th Finance Commission has recommended with regard to enhancing financial viability state level public enterprises (SLPEs) that there is need to ensure that all working enterprises, except those in the welfare and utility sectors become financially viable. A minimum dividend of 5% on Government equity should be paid by all such enterprises. The State Government should actively consider withdrawal/ reduction of SPSUs in non-welfare and non-utility sectors. There is an immediate need to reduce the number of SPSUs in most of the state as the large number of such enterprises not only engage the productivity assets of the Government but also promote inefficiency due to lack of proper monitoring by the State Government. The Commission also recommended disinvestment and privatisation.
The State Government after careful study has initiated a process for induction of a strategic investor for loss making SLPEs in the state namely Sikkim Time Corporation Limited (SITCO), Sikkim Jewels Limited (SJL), Sikkim Precision Industries Limited (SPIL) and Government Fruit Preservation Factory (GFPF). It has been learnt that since three years these SLPEs in the state are undergoing loss. The main reason attributed for loss was recession apart from other factors. Commissioner- cum-Secretary, Commerce and Industry Department, MG Kiran today said that the department is planning to initiate a joint venture for stabilisation of these SLPEs of the state. Considering the same technical bids from the interested parties have been invited and till date a total of eight companies have submitted Expression of Interest (EOI). Six EOI have come for GFPF, one for SITCO, one for SJL and non for SPIL. He also said that the EOI submitted under technical bids are under evaluation. Financial bids will be carried out only after the technical bids are cleared. Out of all the bids submitted one or two are local and the rest are from national level enterprises. He also informed that the department is trying to start the operation soon and all measures to safeguard the existing manpower of the said units have been kept in mind by the department while calling for technical bids.
(Courtesy: Sikkim Mail)