Operating guidelines for lead banks and the steering committee under the inter-creditor agreement (ICA) will be issued by the middle of next week, said C Venkat Nageswar, deputy managing director (global markets), State Bank of India.
Nageswar is part of the Sunil Mehta-led committee, which was tasked with developing a resolution framework for stressed assets of under Rs 2,000 crore under the government’s Sashakt programme.
“We are coming out with the operating guidelines. We have already drafted it and in a couple of days’ time, we will be circulating them to the banks. Once 66% of the banks agree to this, the operating guidelines will become enforceable,” Nageswar told reporters on Tuesday on the sidelines of Fibac, a banking industry conference.
The guidelines will define timelines for resolutions under the ICA and will also detail how to come up with a resolution plan, determine valuations and invite investment bankers as well as a voting mechanism. The committee is looking at floating an asset management company (AMC) and alternative investment funds (AIFs) and is in an advanced stage of discussions with respect to the two.
“There are many funds that have shown keen interest in partnering with us. So, we are working on the structure of the AMC and again it might take another 10-15 days to incorporate or come out with the AMC and kick-start the process. Both domestic and international investors,” Nageswar said, adding that the committee is very clear that PSBs’ stake will not be more than 30% in the fund. The possibility of floating one or multiple AMCs is being considered who will be charged with managing sector-specific funds. “Depending on the sector and the number of assets that are there, each fund can be in the range of Rs 2,000 crore to around Rs 8,000 crore or up to Rs 10,000 crore,” Nageswar said.
So far, 32 banks and financial institutions have signed the ICA, including 20 public-sector banks (PSBs). One PSB is likely to sign it this week. “What we have seen is that banks which have around 85% of the exposure have already signed and it is only people with minimum exposure who are outside the ICA,” Nageswar noted.
He brushed aside concerns about foreign banks staying out of the ICA, saying that their exposure to the relevant cases is limited and they can choose to become part of resolution plans of individual assets. As for the private banks which are yet to sign the agreement, Nageswar said lawyers working on the ICA are talking to such banks’ lawyers to bring them on board.
Asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) can also join the ICA by signing a deed of accession, he said.