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Saccomanni says sale of post office shares worth 4.8 bn euro

Italian cabinet clears sale of parts of companies

24 January, 20:40
Saccomanni says sale of post office shares worth 4.8 bn euro (see related) (ANSA) - Rome, January 24 - The sale of a 40% stake in Italy's post office should yield as much as 4.8 billion euros, Finance Minister Fabrizio Saccomanni said Friday.

He spoke after cabinet agreed to sell off a share of the national postal service, Poste Italiane Spa, as part of efforts to raise much-needed capital to offset Italy's huge debt.

A slightly larger piece of Enav, the Italian air traffic control company, was also approved for sale and should bring in about one billion euros, said Saccomanni.

He had previously suggested that more shares in the postal service could be up for sale later.

Poste Italiane is a public company but is controlled by the Italian government with the sole shareholder being the economy ministry.

It offers both postal and financial services.

The government has also been discussing the sale of shares in other holdings including energy company Eni to try to pay down some of the country's debt that totaled 132.9% of gross domestic product in the third quarter of 2013.

In absolute terms, Italy's debt stood at about 2.068722 trillion euros.