PARIS, March 14 Russia plans to reduce its
holdings in the state shipping company Sovcomflot in the first
half of this year, Economy Minister Maxim Oreshkin told
reporters on Tuesday.
He said the sale would be split between new and existing
shares so the company can raise funds for its own development.
Oreshkin was speaking in Paris after meeting the French
finance minister Michel Sapin and representatives of
Franco-Russian business lobby.
"The deal on Sovcomflot suggests participation of a wide
circle of investors ... If French banks or investors would like
to buy a stake in this company, we would of course be glad,"
The French finance minister said that the Russian
privatisation programme and the participation of French
companies in it was not discussed during the meeting.
(Reporting by Maya Nikolayeva; editing by Katya Golubkova and