PC Board deliberates pre-qualification of investors for PSMC

Statesman Report

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Privatisation Mohammedmian Soomro chaired the Privatisation Commission Board meeting Friday in Islamabad. The agenda regarding the pre-qualification criteria of investors for Pakistan Steel Mills Corp. (PSMC) revival, auction result of Services International Hotel (SIH) among others.

The revival of Pakistan Steel Mills is one of the important objectives of the privatization plan, as the mills is not working since 2015 hence the government planned to bring foreign and domestic investors for the revival of the largest industrial corporation of Pakistan. There have been consecutive meetings with the stakeholders and ministries to resolve the issues. According to the approved transaction features approved by CCoP, the identified core operating assets would be transferred to the new subsidiary owned by PSMC named Steel Corp. (Pvt) Ltd, and then the divestment of equity stakes of the subsidiary shall be 51-74% through a bidding process.

In view of the decision of the Cabinet Committee, EOI for investors would be invited, for the purpose of the pre-qualification of investors. The draft document containing eligibility criteria along with the basis of disqualification for the potential investors was placed before the PC Board for deliberation and approval.

The Privatisation Commission (PC) Board approved the RSOQ and EOI documents. In the light of the decision of the Federal Cabinet, the Ministry of Privatisation will publish the advertisement, inviting the Expression of Interest (EOI) after filing of the scheme of arrangement (SOA) by Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) with SECP.

The PC Board also recommended the highest bidder, for Service International Hotel, i.e. Faisal Town Pvt. Ltd along with offered bid which is higher than the reserved price. The letter of acceptance to the successful bidder will be issued after seeking approval of the CCoP/Cabinet.

The PC Board was also apprised that maximum efforts were made by the Financial Advisors who reached out maximum potential investors but due to resource mobilization, liquidity constraints and overall macro-economic outlook in the backdrop of Covid-19 pandemic the response of the potential bidders appears lackluster. Ministry of Privatisation widely publicized open auction of Services International Hotel (SIH) transactions in all the leading newspapers and social & electronic media was also used for the wider circulation to make the process open and transparent.

Moreover, in pursuance of the approval of the PC Board, 12 pre-qualified parties for Jinnah Convention Center (JCC) have been notified for participating in the future steps of JCC bidding.

Federal Minister said that we have come a long way, with a focused objective to revive the largest industrial unit of Pakistan, which could run in its best capacity and contribute to the national economy.