Italy plans to sell 30 billion euros worth of public assets to reduce its debt

15.06.2012 20:44
Italy plans to sell 30 billion euros worth of public assets  to reduce its debt

YEREVAN, June 15, /ARKA/. Italy plans to sell 30 billion euros ($38 billion) worth of public assets by the end of the year to reduce its massive debt, Il Sole 24 business daily said Friday. Rome aims to have raised 200 billion euros over the next five years, the report added. The plan is to "reduce the debt pile by at least 30 billion by the end of the year and by at least 200 billion over the next five years to get the debt-to-GDP ratio to 110 percent," it said, quoting "well-informed sources."

The "highly ambitious" plan to slash debt by selling "public assets, buildings or otherwise" is driven by an urgent need to placate skittish markets as Italy finds itself on the debt-crisis firing line once more.

Prime Minister Mario Monti was quick to back the plan to raise capital by selling off public assets, from buildings to public services, when he came to power at the end of 2011 as the economic crisis enveloped Italy.

The previous government, led by Silvio Berlusconi, got the ball rolling by inviting international investors to Rome at the end of September. Italy is struggling with a public debt equal to around 120 percent of its gross domestic product, one of the highest levels in the 17-nation eurozone. Figures released by the Bank of Italy on Thursday showed it reached a new record high in April at 1,949 billion euros compared with 1,946 billion in March. -0-


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