by Staff Writers
Paris (AFP) Jan 11, 2017
France has sold a 4.1-percent stake in energy company Engie, pulling in 1.14 billion euros ($1.2 billion) to help finance a state-led rescue of troubled nuclear firm Areva.
The sale of 100 million Engie shares was 10 million above the amount initially offered, the APE agency which manages shareholdings for the French state said in a statement late on Tuesday.
The sale leaves the French state with 28.7 percent of the capital and 32.6 percent of the voting rights in Engie, the energy and gas company that used to be known as GDF Suez.
The agency said the sale would still leave the French state as the top shareholder in the company which is the world's top independent electricity producer and a leading liquefied natural gas importer.
Last year, the French government announced it would sell off some shareholdings to raise funds to bail out nuclear reactor firm Areva.
The European Commission gave the green light Tuesday to the French state pumping 4.5 billion euros into Areva subject to competition regulators approving the sale of the reactor business to electricity supplier EDF.
The French state, which owns 85 percent of EDF, has also undertaken to subscribe to 3 out of 4 billion euros in capital that the company plans to raise this year.
As of last April, the French state held stakes in 81 companies, including telecommunications operator Orange and aircraft engine maker Safran. The value of its portfolio was estimated some 90 billion euros.
The value of the listed companies fell by 11.5 percent last year to 59.7 billion euros, mostly due to the sliding value of shares in the energy companies EDF, Areva and Engie
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