Berlin would mull Commerzbank sale only after revamp-magazine

FRANKFURT Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:33am EDT

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FRANKFURT Aug 20 (Reuters) - The German government would entertain a sale of its 17 percent stake in Commerzbank only after a restructuring of the lender is completed in 2016, a top finance ministry official told a German magazine.

"We are not a long-term investor but I see no reason to part with our stake right now," Thomas Steffen told Manager Magazin.

"If we were to get out now it would mean that we don't believe in management's plans," he added.

Berlin has been periodically approached about disposing of its stake in Germany's second-biggest lender, acquired as a result of a bailout in the financial crisis, Steffen said, but the government does not hold "secret talks at a motorway rest stop" about selling the holding. (Reporting by Jonathan Gould)

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