France expects rapid progress on Alstom stake purchase - Hollande

PARIS, June 21 Sat Jun 21, 2014 8:13am EDT

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PARIS, June 21 (Reuters) - The French government expects to see rapid progress in talks on the purchase of an Alstom stake from Bouygues, President Francois Hollande said on Saturday.

He was speaking a day after France backed a tie-up between Alstom and U.S. rival General Electric on condition the government acquires 20 percent of the company from Bouygues .

"This is a major condition for the government's acceptance of the alliance," Hollande told reporters in Paris. "That's why I believe we will make progress by the end of the day."

(Reporting by Elizabeth Pineau; Editing by Janet Lawrence)