Promoters are becoming serious in repaying their dues, India's largest bank State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Rajnish Kumar told BloombergQuint in an exclusive interview. Kumar further stated that he expects large accounts getting resolved in the first half of the next calendar year.
"If promoters are willing to settle and there are good quality assets, then there is no need for banks to take any haircuts," said Kumar while declining to comment on the specifics of the transactions.
On Thursday, Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio announced that it was acquiring younger brother Anil Ambani-owned Reliance Communications' (RCom's) wireless infrastructure assets, including towers and spectrum worth around Rs 20,000-24,000 crore.
Earlier this week, RCom exited from the Strategic Debt Restructuring (SDR) scheme and Anil Ambani said proceeds from the deal with Reliance Jio would be used for reducing the company's debts.
This deal and RCom's decision to repay loans seemed to indicate that promoters are scared of losing their business and finding ways to clear loans.
In the first half of the 2018, many of the accounts under insolvency proceedings will reach the 270-day deadline for resolution set under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC). The 270 days is the maximum period given to companies to come up with a resolution plan, failing which the companies go into liquidation.
"We are very much in the resolution phase. In the next 3-6 months, the accounts which got referred to IBC in the first phase, the resolution plans for them will be put in place. The cases which have been referred recently will get resolved soon after. Between January and June, hopefully, there will be a significant resolution," SBI chairman said.
Speaking on the restriction that doesn't allow promoters to bid for their assets, Kumar said he doesn't expect the restrictions to impact the value recovered from the assets up for bidding.
Kumar added that there is considerable interest, particularly for assets in the steel sector. And he further added the he is convinced that the resolution is expected to gain steam and help resolve bad loan problem.