New Delhi, Sept. 12: The government has decided to dilute its stake in Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), the largest of the eight defence public sector units.
Defence ministry sources said the modalities to offload 10 per cent of government holding were being worked out. The finance ministry that requested the divestment was being asked to value HALs shares.
HAL is the third defence PSU after Bharat Electronics Limited and Bharat Earth Movers Limited in which the government is diluting its stake.
But HAL is much larger that any of these companies and claims to be one of the largest aerospace companies in Asia that has or is engaged in making or license-producing (assembling) 16 different types of aircraft and aeroplane parts.
It is also one of the most highly profitable defence PSUs with a sales turnover of Rs 11,457 crore and a profit of Rs 1,967 crore in 2009-2010.
Earlier, the government had offloaded about 12 per cent in Bharat Electronics which makes signals, communications and electronic warfare equipment and about 38 per cent in Bharat Earth Movers that makes or trades in multi-wheeled vehicles (including those used to transport missiles).
Defence ministry sources said that the finance ministry has been encouraging the divestment in HAL.
HAL has technology collaboration agreements with several overseas companies, such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin of the US, Rolls Royce of the UK and United Aircraft Corporation of Russia.