Pakistan is struggling to sell-off a number of state-run companies. Among them: Pakistan Steel Mills. It has huge debt and loses millions of dollars a week. Bob Fraser reports on the government's efforts to sell-off some of its biggest loss-makers.
It was once the producer of almost half of Pakistan's steel. But now these state-owned factories stand quiet on the outskirts of Karachi. Pakistan Steel Mills is for sale but the government can't find a buyer. The stuggle to sell happens after a series of setbacks with privatisations in the country. A quick look at PSM's finances might explain why there's no buyers coming forward. The company has three and half billion dollars of debt and loses 5 million dollars a week. The government has put $2 billion into PSM since a failed selloff in 2006. Now, the country's privatisation chairman says they can't invest anymore capital. PSM is just one of several companies Pakistan is trying to revive. But it's struggled to restructure the loss-making firms. The government's efforts to privatise have not been well-received by everybody. There were protests against the sale of another state-run company earlier this month. Until Pakistan can find a buyer for PSM or inject more money into the struggling firm, factories like will stay quiet. And employees whose livelihoods are at risk face a nervous wait for more work.