July 18, 2013 / 10:27 AM / in 5 years

Telecom Italia rules out Brazil asset sales for now - sources

MILAN, July 18 (Reuters) - Telecom Italia has ruled out for now any plan to sell its profitable Brazilian assets to avoid antitrust issues in the likely event that Spain’s Telefonica becomes its main shareholder after ownership changes later this year, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

Holding company Telco, which controls 22.4 percent of Telecom Italia, is likely to be dissolved in September, leaving Telefonica with around 10 percent of the company.

“That option is out of the question because it would make no sense for Telecom to cede its only asset with a history of growth,” said one source.

“It’s one scenario. Anything could happen but I don’t think it’s likely,” said a second source.

Il Sole-24 Ore reported that changes at Telco could result in a breakup of Telecom’s TIM Brasil have an impact in Brazil. At 1023 GMT, Telecom’s shares were down 1.3 percent.

Telecom had no comment.

Reporting By Paola Arosio, writing by Isla Binnie, editing by Jennifer Clark

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