In a swift move, the government invited initial bids for sale of its entire 52.98% cent stake in BPCL. Post the sale, the government will have zero percent ownership left in BPCL. The last date for submission of expressions of interest (EOI) will be 2 May and the government has stipulated that the interested parties must have a minimum net worth of $10 billion. The government has also clarified that centrally public sector enterprises (CPSEs) will not be eligible to participate in the bidding. The government will eventually set the reserve price for the stake sale after receiving bids and the selected bidder will have to mandatorily make an open offer to acquire at least another 26% stake from minority shareholders. This stake sale will exclude the Numaligarh Refinery in Assam from the company’s portfolio. The Numaligarh refinery will be hived off before BPCL’s privatisation and will be taken over by another PSU. The decision comes nearly 44 years after BPCL was nationalized. BPCL has a market share of 21% and in refining. However, employees of BPCL have been up in arms that the company was being sold to private parties for a very low price and they wanted a valuation closer to Rs.8-9 trillion for the company.