February 7, 2018 / 5:03 PM / 5 months ago

France needs 3 billion euro to fend off takeovers - state bank chief

PARIS (Reuters) - France needs to have 3 billion euros (2.66 billion pounds) ready to fend off foreign takeovers of French groups, the head of the Bpifrance public investment bank said on Wednesday.

Bpifrance’s Nicolas Dufourcq told a committee in the lower house of parliament looking into France’s industrial policies that there were reflections underway about how to keep France’s biggest companies from being bought by foreign buyers such as private equity funds.

“There’s a risk, relatively small, that what’s happened to Belgium could happen to us, which is to say that in several years the big groups are gone, bought up,” he said.

“So if we want to avoid that, we’ve got to be able to mobilise about 3 billion euros and it’s not difficult to do that,” he added.

Reporting by Myriam Rivet; writing by Leigh Thomas; editing by Michel Rose

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