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Govt open to Vi’s post-moratorium relief request, with conditions

The Centre will consider favourably any request from Vodafone Idea for either deferring or converting adjusted gross revenue and spectrum dues into equity post September, 2025, when the current moratorium on such payments ends. However, such relief may come attached with certain conditions, officials told Fe.

Officials said with the successful Rs 18,000-crore follow-on public offer (FPO) last month, the telco will be able to participate in industry growth and the government will support it in every possible manner.

Post the FPO, the government’s equity has come down to 24.27% in the company.

Vodafone Idea chief executive officer Akshaya Moondra recently told FE that the company may need further support from the government once the current moratorium on the AGR and spectrum dues ends in September, 2025. The company may either seek further deferral on the payments or urge the government to convert the dues into equity, he said.

The 2021 package has a provision in this regard to offer further relief to the company, but it is at the option of the government.

Vodafone Idea’s total dues stand at around Rs 2 trillion, of which 98% — Rs 1.96 trillion — is owed to the government in AGR and spectrum dues. The bank debt was only of Rs 4,400 crore. Once the moratorium ends in September 2025, the company will need to pay the government Rs 29,100 crore for FY26 and Rs 43,000 crore annually from FY27 till FY31.

The company may need further government support because the fundraising plan of Rs 45,000 crore, even if fully realised through a combination of Rs 20,000 crore through equity-linked instruments and Rs 25,000 crore through debt, may not be enough for the company to meet all its requirements. Financial Express

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