The Italian government plans to sell a stake of up to 4% in Eni SpA after the oil company completes its share buyback plan, a deal that will allow Rome to reduce its huge debt, Bloomberg reports.
The executive wants to obtain approximately 20 billion euro, following asset sales, in the period 2024 – 2026, the Treasury announced in the Economic and Financial Document (DEF), which sets the objectives regarding public finances and the economy. The plan is part of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s efforts to finance new expenses without increasing Italy’s public debt, the second highest in the euro zone and a cause for concern for EU authorities and financial markets, according to Agerpres.
Sources who wished to remain anonymous told Bloomberg that the authorities in Rome hope to obtain approximately two billion euros from the sale of the stake, as part of the plan to sell state assets.
At the Milan Stock Exchange, Eni’s shares registered a decline of 1.2% on Thursday, to 14.47 euros.
The representatives of the Ministry of Finance refused to comment on the information. Currently, the Italian Treasury holds a 4.7% stake in Eni, and the state bank Cassa Depositi e Prestiti 27.7%.
The Minister of Economy, Giancarlo Giorgetti, recently declared that shares in the state railway company and the company that manages the highway network should also be sold. On Wednesday, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Giorgetti announced that he is discussing the sale of some holdings with foreign funds, but did not specify which companies are involved and who are the potential buyers.