The Union Government has given the nod for divesting an additional 8.38 per cent stake in iron ore producer NMDC, Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh said on Wednesday.

At present, the government holds about 98.38 per cent in the Navratna firm. About 1.62 per cent holding has already been made public.

The government’s two-phase share sale programme for Steel Authority of India (SAIL) may also get the Cabinet go-ahead by the end of December, he added. Meanwhile, the inter-ministerial group (IMG) on disinvestment is expected to discuss on Thursday the appointment of investment bankers and advisers for the NMDC disinvestment, thus kick starting the stake sale process in the nation’s largest iron ore producer.

The government is expected to garner over Rs. 13,500 crore through the process at the current market price of NMDC shares, which closed at Rs. 422.75 on the BSE on Wednesday.

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