Cochin’s Workers Oppose IPO Plan

Cochin Shipyard’s unionized workers are protesting the proposed initial public offering (IPO) which would see Indian government relinquish its stake in the shipyard in order to raise funds for infrastructure expansion, The Hindu reports.

According to the workers, if the government of India does not change its mind about the sale, they would stage an indefinite strike.

The proposal, which should raise an amount of  Rs 33.984 crore, would include an issue of an IPO of over 3 million equity shares, comprising a fresh issue of over 2 million shares and sale of the government’s stake of over one million shares.

The Hindu cited the chairman and managing director of the yard, Madhu S. Nair, as saying that the rationale behind the move was explained to the unions and that “they are fully seized of the need for expansion. Only, they want the money required for this to be raised by other means.”

The shipyard is looking to collecting the funds through a mixture of debt and equity.

According to Nair, the government plans to disinvest only a 10 per cent of its stake.

The announcement comes as the shipbuilder sets stage for the construction of the country’s first LNG carriers.

Only a month back, the yard cleared another hurdle with the signing of an agreement with French Gaztransport & Technigaz (GTT) to build the LNG carrier containment system. Cochin received a license by GTT for the construction of LNG carriers using GTT’s membrane containment systems.

World Maritime News Staff

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