ROME Feb 15 Italy will press ahead with plans
to privatise state-controlled companies but the government will
maintain a guiding role in their objective, Economy Minister
Pier Carlo Padoan said on Wednesday.
Responding to questions about an ambitious privatisation
programme which has run into delays, Padoan told reporters the
government's plan had not changed, and sought to calm fears that
company strategies could change after privatisation.
"The privatisations done so far and those in the future do
not take the state out of its guiding role," he said at a news
conference in Rome.
"The strategic objectives remain fully operational and if
there are fears about changing priorities, they are mistaken."
Infrastructure Minister Graziano Delrio has expressed doubts
about a planned sale of a stake in the state railways company,
and an industry ministry undersecretary questioned a plan to
sell a further stake in the post office.
($1 = 0.9477 euros)
(Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Isla Binnie)