As the pandemic has impacted the government’s mega disinvestment plans, the Centre has again extended the deadline for submission of Expressions of Interest (EoI) for the strategic sale of Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) to November 16.
This is the fourth extension of the deadline for bid submission. The government had first invited bids by May 2. This was then extended till June 13, and to July 31 in the second extension and to September 30 in the third instance.
In an official notification the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM), attributed the decision to requests received from interested bidders, along with the situation arising out of the pandemic.
“In view of further requests received from the Interested Bidders (IBs) and the prevailing situation arising out of Covid-19 pandemic, the last Date for submission of EoIs is further extended to 16th November, 2020 (by 5.00 PM),” it said.
The disinvestment in BPCL involves the government selling its entire 52.98 per cent stake in the company to a strategic investor with transfer of management control. The government has barred PSUs from bidding for BPCL and expects private sector Indian players and global MNCs to bid for its stake. The government’s stake in BPCL is worth around Rs 50,000 crore.
Shares of the state-run oil major plunged on Wednesday after the extension of the deadline. At 11.24 a.m., its shares on the BSE were trading at Rs 362.25, lower by Rs 23.95 or 6.20 per cent from its previous close.