Italian govt wants a say on sale of Leonardo's OTO Melara, Wass - source

ROME (Reuters) - The Italian government is following closely talks over the sale of Leonardo’s OTO Melara and Wass units and wants to have a say on the negotiations, a political source involved in the discussions said on Friday.

Italian newspaper la Repubblica reported on Friday that Franco-German KMW+Nexter Defence Systems (KNDS) has lodged a bid with Leonardo to buy the two units from the Italian state-controlled defence group.

The source confirmed that KNDS had expressed its interest and added that Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri is still in the running.

Talks are still at an early stage and have implications for Italian government-funded programmes for the army, the source said.

Leonardo declined to comment and KNDS was not immediately available for comment.

Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte and Francesca Landini; writing by Francesca Landini, editing by Giulia Segreti