Telecom Italia and CDP still far from agreement on fixed line network

MILAN, Sept 30 Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:31pm EDT

MILAN, Sept 30 (Reuters) - Telecom Italia and state holding company Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) are still far from an agreement on an investment in the Italian phone group's fixed line network, Telecom Italia's top executive said in a letter on Monday.

Telecom Italia's chairman Franco Bernabe has drawn up a plan to spin off the indebted phone company's fixed-line network that could involve an investment by state lender CDP.

But on Monday, Bernabe complained that his plan lacked political support. His comment was contained in a letter to the chairmen of two Senate commissions who have been looking into the company's strategy.

Bernabe called on the two chairmen to speed up the network spin off plan and the CDP investment in order to give the company "a more positive outlook, in terms of a flexible time table, with regards to a capital increase".

In a parliamentary hearing last week, the 65-year-old manager said Telecom Italia needed to raise fresh capital to avoid a credit rating downgrade to "junk" status and that the best way would be through a capital increase.

Bernabe spoke out against possible plans by top shareholder Telefonica to sell some of the company's most valued assets, such as Brazilian unit TIM Participacoes, once it gains control of its Italian rival. (Reporting by Jennifer Clark; Editing by Agnieszka Flak)

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