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Indonesian parliament approves privatising of three major state firms

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The parliament of Indonesia has approved government plans to make an Initial Public Offering (IPO) of shares in three major state-owned firms, privatising them. They are steelmaker Krakatau Steel, Bank Tabungan Negara (BTN) and national flag carrier Garuda Indonesia.

The parliament has left the process fully in the hands of the government, and has set the maximum stake to be sold at 30% for BTN and Krakatau, and 40% for Garuda. Although Indonesia has been known to fund budget deficits with privatisation, the intention is for the funds from this scheme to go to the businesses themselves to allow expansion.

Krakatau expects 3.2 trillion Rupiah (IDR) from the sale, while the estimated price for their stock is between IDR3 and IDR4 trillion (321 - 428 million USD). Both ArcelorMittal SA, the biggest steelmaker in the world, and BlueScope Steel Ltd, the largest in Australia, have expressed an interest in the IPO. Krakatau will use the funds to help finance an expansion scheme which aims to have production doubled to five million tonnes in 2011.

BTN, which focuses on home owner loans, has set itself a target income of IDR36.12 trillion (3.86 billion USD) in 2010 compared to a projected IDR22.9 trillion ( 2.45 billion USD) this year. Net profit for this year is projected at IDR472 billion (50.5 million USD)and is hoped to rise to IDR1.39 trillion (148.7 million USD) in 2010. The bank's loan to deposit ratio is predicted to rise from 105.05% this year to 144.93% in 2012. BTN hopes to conduct its IPO before the end of 2008.

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Is the Indonesian government right to keep majority holdings?

Garuda is not quite 100% state-owned to start with, unlike the other two, but is very close with 95.44% of the company belonging to the government. Like all of Indonesia's 51 airlines, Garuda is on the list of air carriers banned in the EU due to safety concerns raised after a string of air accidents in the nation. Garuda expects to raise IDR4.2 trillion (449.4 million USD) in funds from the IPO, and will use IDR2.5 trillion (267.5 million USD) to pay off its debts and invest IDR1.7 trillion (181.9 million USD) in new aircraft.

The government is still working to get a deal to make IPOs for architectural firm Yodya Karya and three plantation firms called Perkebunan Nusantara III, IV and VII.

Sources