Amid the escalating Russian invasion of Ukraine, which has already sent ripples across the global equity markets, the government may soon hold a review of the upcoming LIC IPO. According to government sources, a meeting is likely to be held on whether the IPO should be deferred to the next financial year amid the growing geo-political tensions.
The draft red herring prospectus for the country's largest IPO was filed on February 13 and the listing was supposed to take place this month. A top government source said that a review meeting on the proposed LIC IPO date is likely to be held this week.
Given the fast changing geo-political situation on the Russia-Ukraine front, timing of the LIC IPO has become a sore point for the government given the jitters in the global equity markets. In fact finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who was quite confident in a post-budget interaction with the industry in Mumbai last Tuesday, is of the view now that the IPO timing may warrant a relook.
On last Tuesday, Sitharaman said the LIC IPO will go ahead as planned in the current financial year, despite the emerging situation. Claiming that the LIC DRHP has created a buzz in the market, Sitharaman said in the press conference after the industry interaction on February 22, "There is a lot of interest in the market on LIC IPO. We will be going ahead with it." On whether it will happen in the current fiscal, FM said DRHPs are not issued two years in advance.
It may, however, be noted that this statement was given by the minister two days before Russia officially announced war on Ukraine on February 24. Equity indices tanked post the announcement of the war and the weakness sustains in the domestic market.
In a recent media interaction, Sitharaman pointed out that the LIC IPO may warrant a re-look amid the given situation.