Vicious cycle: CPSEs owe a lot, but deprived of much larger dues

Trade receivables of 14 among the larger central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) rose 42% year-on-year to Rs 3.5 lakh crore at FY20 end, according to data reviewed by FE. This is partly, if not largely, due to payments held up by their owner, namely the central government, against the supplies received of goods and services. So, if the CPSEs, on their part, have not cleared a large portion of their dues to the industry (public and private), and the outstanding amount touched Rs 60,500 crore at March end, 2020, it is due to this vicious cycle of defaults.

In fact, as the chart shows, the trade receivables of CPSEs – 249 in total – have been rising relentlessly in recent years. The consolidated figures are available for only up to FY19; but given the big rise in receivables of the 14 large firms, the figure must have shot up further in FY20.

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