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What Are Navratna Companies and Which Are the 18 Navratna Companies?

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In the context of India’s public sector, “Navratna” is a term that signifies excellence, autonomy, and strategic importance. Derived from the Sanskrit word for “nine gems,” Navratna companies are among the most prestigious public sector undertakings (PSUs) in India. These companies have been granted enhanced financial and operational autonomy to compete effectively in the global market, foster innovation, and drive economic growth.

Navratna Companies
Image Source: The Civil India

The Navratna status was introduced in 1997 by the Government of India as part of its economic liberalization and public sector reforms. To qualify for this elite status, a PSU must first achieve Miniratna status and then meet specific financial criteria. This includes maintaining a net profit of at least ₹5,000 crore annually for three consecutive years, having an average annual turnover exceeding ₹25,000 crore, or an average annual net worth surpassing ₹15,000 crore over the same period.

Navratna companies enjoy significant autonomy, allowing them to make substantial investments without seeking government approval. They can invest up to ₹1,000 crore or 15% of their net worth in a single project, and up to 30% of their net worth in a year, provided these investments do not exceed ₹1,000 crore. This autonomy extends to forming joint ventures, establishing subsidiaries, and entering into strategic alliances both domestically and internationally.

The 18 Navratna Companies

1Engineers India Limited (EIL)
2Container Corporation of India Limited (CONCOR)
3Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL)
4Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)
5Neyveli Lignite Corporation Limited (NLC India)
6Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited (RINL)
7Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilisers Limited (RCF)
8Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL)
9National Buildings Construction Corporation Limited (NBCC)
10National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO)
11National Mineral Development Corporation Limited (NMDC)
12Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL)
13Shipping Corporation of India Limited (SCI)
14ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL)
15RITES Limited
16IRCON International Limited
17IREDA Limited 
18Mazagon Dock ShipBuilders Limited 

    Impact of Navratna Status

    The Navratna status empowers these companies to operate with greater independence, enabling them to make strategic decisions swiftly and efficiently. This autonomy has led to increased competitiveness, innovation, and financial performance. By allowing these PSUs to form joint ventures and enter international markets, the Navratna status has also facilitated knowledge transfer, technological advancements, and global partnerships.

    Moreover, the enhanced financial capabilities have enabled these companies to invest in research and development, modernize infrastructure, and expand their operations. This has not only bolstered their growth but also contributed significantly to the nation’s economic development.

    Navratna companies represent the pinnacle of excellence in India’s public sector, driving economic growth, innovation, and global competitiveness. The recent inclusion of Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited as the 18th Navratna company

    You might also be interested in – IREDA has been awarded ‘Navratna’ status:

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