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Jaypee To Sell Stake In Cement Unit

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India's Jaypee Group, the $3 billion engineering and construction conglomerate, is in talks to sell a stake in its cement unit Jaiprakash Associates, the Economic Times newspaper reported on Monday citing a company executive.

Jaypee has approached a number of investors including Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings regarding a stake in Jaiprakash, India's fourth-largest cement company by sales, group managing director Manoj Gaur was quoted as saying.

The stake sale is part of fundraising to reduce the group's debt, which stands at around $8 billion, the report said.

A spokesman for Jaiprakash, which has production capacity of 26.20 million tonnes, could not be reached for comment.

Cement firms in India, the world's second-largest producer after China, have seen reduced demand in recent quarters on excess supply and a slump in construction due to high interest rates and slowing economic growth.

Switzerland's Holcim owns a 46 per cent stake in ACC and Ambuja Cements India's second and third-largest cement firms.

Jaiprakash, ACC, Ambuja and industry leader Ultratech control around 50 per cent of India's cement market.