June 28, 2017 / 7:59 PM / 2 years ago

Italy's A2A to sell stake in Montenegro's EPCG utility: minister

PODGORICA (Reuters) - Italy’s biggest regional utility A2A will divest of its stake in Montenegro’s Elektorprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG) utility after July 1, the Balkan country’s economy minister said on Wednesday.

A2A, controlled by the cities of Milan and Brescia, spent around 436 million euros on buying a 43.7 percent holding in EPCG, which it has since cut to 41.7 percent. In May it hired investment bank Rothschild to advise on a stake sale.

“We are currently in negotiations with A2A,” Economy Minister Dragica Sekulic told reporters on Wednesday.

“I believe we will very soon be able to inform the public about the outcome of those negotiations,” she said.

No one could be reached at A2A for comment on Wednesday.

Montenegro’s government, which owns the rest of EPCG, has in the past complained about the low level of investment by A2A.

Although it has a minority stake, A2A jointly manages EPCG and has previously said it wanted investment return guarantees, management autonomy and a clear regulatory framework.

Reporting by Petar Komnenic; additional reporting by stephen Jewkes in Milan; Writing by Ivana Sekularac; editing by Susan Thomas

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