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€2.5 billion from privatization in 2010

31 December 2009 / 10:12:24  GRReporter
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From the privatization of state companies by the end of 2010 the new government is expecting to gain €2.5 billion. Subject to privatization will be companies in the field of energy, gambling and banks. Ministry of Finance plans to create a similar company to the company for government securities, which will focus on the contributions of all state and public enterprises and will actively take on the Greek stock market next year. The goal is to accumulate funds in the Treasury (€2.5 billion are 1% of GDP), without the state completely losing control of the respective companies.

Foreign investors have shown interest in the National Electricity Company and the National Telecommunications Company and the Commercial Bank with state capital Postbank, where public participation is 34.4 percent. Another sector in which international investors show interest is the Agency for soccer games forecasting OPAP (where public participation is also 34.4 percent) and the state gambling. Ministry of Finance prepares a gradual withdrawal of the state sector of the gambling establishments (like Joker, Lotto, etc.) and a first step for this is the privatization of OPAP. The aim is to avoid prosecution for state monopoly in gambling. Problem bequeathed by the previous government is also the completion of the procedure for the sale of government stake in Casino Mont Parnes, which is 49% of the total share capital.

The 2010 privatization program is considered a very important part of the stability and development program, which the Government of Papandreou should submit for approval to the National Assembly in mid-January. The privatization plan envisages a total reduction of public participation in the establishment of natural gas by 65 percent and putting into circulation the 35 percent state's participation in the Greek oil company, most of which belongs to the financial mastodons Latsis. The probability to reduce the state stake in companies such as water and sanitation is not out of the question as well. 

Tags: privatization economy Greece Papandreou
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