The Government has cut its disinvestment target for this fiscal because of the global commodity showdown, Jayant Sinha, Minister of State - Finance, Union Government, said here at a mutual fund conference.

Recent media reports indicated that with more than half of the financial year over, the government is behind schedule to meet its FY16 divestment target of Rs 69,500 crore. The government has so far raised only Rs 12,500 crore through stake sales in public sector companies. The Department of Disinvestment has asked the government to cut the total target by more than half to Rs 30,000 crore for the year.

Speaking on the issue, Sinha said: "The global showdown in commodity prices has suppressed the stock prices of most public sector companies slated for disinvestment, which are mostly in the commodity business." These companies included ONGC, OIL, Natco, NMDC and BHEL. He said the government would return to the market when valuations of these companies improved.

Sinha was speaking at a conference organised by global investment advisory Morningstar.  He laid out the reform initiatives being executed by the central government, particularly in giving universal access to banking services, the Make In India programme, increasing access to agricultural credit, improving fiscal architecture, refinancing of public sector banks, and improved public investment, especially in roads and railways.