March 19, 2018 / 4:14 PM / a year ago

Majority of French back selling state assets in Renault, Orange, PSA: poll

The tyre of Renault's Reon concept car is seen at its launch at the India Auto Show 2018 in Greater Noida, India, February 7, 2018. REUTERS/Saumya Khandelwal

PARIS (Reuters) - A majority of French voters back selling all or some of the state’s assets in automakers Renault (RENA.PA) and Peugeot (PEUP.PA), airliner Air France (AIRF.PA) and telecoms group Orange (ORAN.PA), an opinion poll showed on Monday.

France announced last year plans to sell some 10 billion euros worth of stakes in state-owned companies in order to raise money for a new fund to finance innovation, an election pledge of President Emmanuel Macron.

State stakes in big groups have long had popular backing, and the OpinionWay poll showed two thirds of voters still back it in principle.

But the survey stressed that when it comes to individual companies, a majority back selling stakes in companies that are not viewed as public services.

Renault, at the heart of a power struggle over its ownership, topped the list, with 56 percent in favour of the state selling at least some of its 15 percent stake.

The survey showed, however, that a majority oppose the selling of state assets in mail operator La Poste and electricity provider EDF (EDF.PA).

Responses were split about state-owned railway operator SNCF, with 50 percent opposing any asset sale and 47 percent backing it.

Reporting by Ingrid Melander; editing by John Irish

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