Italy economy minister against selling Eni, Enel stakes

ROME Wed Oct 3, 2012 4:35am EDT

ROME Oct 3 (Reuters) - The need to guarantee energy supplies means it would not be wise for the Italian government to sell more stakes in energy company Eni or utility Enel, Economy Minister Vittorio Grilli said on Wednesday.

The state directly or indirectly controls around 31 percent of Enel and roughly the same proportion of ENI.

Grilli told a parliamentary panel it would be "ill advised" to sell any more.

The government is under pressure to sell state assets to try to reduce Italy's huge public debt, equal to more than 123 percent of gross domestic product.

In other comments, Grill said it would "certainly be useful" if state holding company Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) were to invest in AnsaldoEnergia, which is being sold by Finmeccanica as part of a bid to turn around Italy's No. 2 industrial group.

(Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Gavin Jones)

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