Italy may raise 6 bln euros in sale of post office stake -govt source

ROME Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:39am EST

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ROME Jan 22 (Reuters) - Italy could raise as much as 6 billion euros ($8.13 billion) to lower the European Union's second-biggest debt in the planned sale of up to 40 percent of the national post office service, a government source said on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Enrico Letta's government will likely examine a bill on the privatisation of national post office service Poste Italiane on Friday afternoon at a cabinet meeting, other government sources said.

The sale is expected to place by June or July.

Italy is under pressure to reduce a public debt expected to be 132.7 percent of national output by the end of this year, surpassed only by Greece in the euro zone. The post office is currently wholly owned by the state. ($1 = 0.7383 euros) (Reporting by Valentina Consiglio, Alberto Sisto, and Roberto Landucci, writing by Naomi O'Leary)

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