Kerala: State-owned PSUs’ losses mounted by 250% last year

Of the 153 SLPEs, only 116 were covered by the report. Together they provided employment to 1.33 lakh persons including those on contract as against 1.29 lakh in 2019-20.

Published: 13th March 2022 06:11 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th March 2022 06:11 AM   |  A+A-

Cash; Capital; investment, Credit

Representational Image. (File Photo)

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala continues to show interest in the central PSUs that are put up for sale, but the performance of the state-owned public enterprises paints a grim picture, if the latest figures are any indication.

The annual Review of Public Enterprises in Kerala 2020-21 tabled in the assembly on Friday showed the net loss incurred by the state-level public enterprises (SLPEs) grew to Rs 6,055.47 crore from Rs 1,738.25 crore in the previous year. A major reason for this 248.37% increase in net loss could be the business disruption due to Covid. It occurred despite a 10.05% increase in investment in these enterprises and last year’s Rs 7,066.11-crore budgetary support.

Of the 153 SLPEs, only 116 were covered by the report. Together they provided employment to 1.33 lakh persons including those on contract as against 1.29 lakh in 2019-20. The total paid-up capital of the active enterprises was Rs 18,355.99 crore, an increase of 7.34% from the previous year. The enterprises’ net worth plunged to negative Rs 1,1630.01 crore — by 43.23% compared to the previous year.

The number of profit-making enterprises was 50, the same as the previous fiscal. But the total profit earned by them went down by 41.86%, from Rs 883.73 crore in 2019-20 to Rs 513.79 crore in 2020-21. The number of loss-making enterprises was 63, one fewer than the previous year. The most profitable enterprise of the year was Kerala State Financial Enterprises (Rs 146.41 crore), followed by the Kerala Minerals and Metals Limited (Rs 85.28 crore) and the Kerala Feeds Limited (Rs 36.07 crore).

Among the loss-making enterprises, the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation suffered the most  (Rs 1,976.03 crore), followed by the Kerala State Electricity Board Ltd (Rs 1,822.35 crore) and the Kerala State Beverages Corporation (Bevco) — Rs 1,608.17 crore.  

Covid and lockdown hit Bevco

The lockdown and other restrictions due to Covid are cited as the reasons for the fall in the profit of Bevco, which had posted Rs 180.84 crore profit in the previous fiscal. It was the second profitable PSU
that year. The turnover of Bevco in 2020-21 and 2019-20 was Rs 2,527.69 crore and Rs 3,782.51 crore, respectively. The corporation remained the biggest contributor to the exchequer by way of taxes and duties in both years, Rs 12,880.82 crore and Rs 12,548.65 crore, respectively.

Bevco MD S Syamsundar said that despite the audit figures, the fact remains that a good chunk of the revenue mobilised by the corporation goes to the state exchequer as sales tax and excise duty. “We have
already initiated several steps like curtailing establishment cost to make the corporation profitable again,” he said.

LOSING CAUSE

Rs 6,055.47 cr was the net loss incurred by the state-level public enterprises in the last fiscal

Business disruption due to Covid is considered as a major reason for the loss

Rs 1,976.03 cr suffered by KSRTC alone, which was the highest

63 enterprises suffered losses in the last fiscal


TAGS
Kerala PSU

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