DoT begins process to revive ITI

The Telecom Ministry has started the process for reviving the ailing state-owned telecom equipment maker ITI Limited and sought comments from various departments.

The ministry has floated a Cabinet note for a revival package of Rs 4,156 crore after the Board for Reconstruction of Public Sector Enterprises accorded its views for revival of the public sector undertaking (PSU) recently.

Earlier, the Board of Industrial and Financial Reconstruction also gave its green signal saying that the process can be started after obtaining the approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs.

“The Department of Telecommunication is trying to turnaround the company by leveraging upon its assets and financial re-engineering,” the official said.

ITI is banking on orders from its major customers Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) for revival. The company is also trying to get more orders from the defence sector.

In 2012-13, the company incurred a net loss of Rs 182 crore against a loss of Rs 370 crore in the previous fiscal.

The government had earlier put ITI on the block, but found no takers. Investors had stayed away in the previous attempts citing stringent norms that will hinder a possible turnaround of the company.

The Bangalore headquartered PSU employs over 11,000 people across its six manufacturing plants. For the past several years, the government has been exploring various options to revive ITI.

In 2005-06, the government gave Rs 1,025-crore aid to ITI as part of a bailout package.

The company got an additional aid of around Rs 2,500 crore in 2008-09 to write-off losses worth Rs 2,820 crore.

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