State-owned Coal India (CIL) is likely to file a draft prospectus next week for its initial public offering, billed to be India’s biggest issue, through which the government expects to raise about Rs. 15,000 crore.

“The company’s board is meeting on August 5 to finalise the draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) and in all probability, papers will be filed with market regulator Sebi within the first week of August,” a person in-the-know of the development told PTI on Monday.

Last month, the Union Cabinet had cleared the proposal to divest 10 per cent of the government’s stake in the world’s largest coal miner through an IPO. The Centre holds 100 per cent equity in the company.

Earlier, Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal had said the share sale could be launched in October, terming the month “auspicious”, as it coincides with the Durga Puja celebrations.

Sources said the IPO is expected to be launched on October 18 and will close on October 21. The government is looking to raise between Rs. 12,000 crore to Rs. 15,000 crore through the share sale.

Although CIL’s IPO was originally planned for August-September, it was delayed due to opposition from trade unions and political parties to the government’s proposed 10 per cent stake sale.

Coal India produced 431.5 million tonnes of coal in the last fiscal. The country’s coal output stood at 531.5 million tonnes in 2009-10. The company is one of the cheapest suppliers of the raw material in the world, selling its coal at 50 per cent cheaper rates than its global rivals.

Anil Ambani Group firm Reliance Power’s IPO in January, 2008, is the biggest IPO in India so far. RPower had raised Rs. 11,500 crore through its IPO.

The government aims to raise Rs. 40,000 crore through disinvestment of PSUs this fiscal.

Keywords: CILIPO