France to temporarily nationalize Saint-Nazaire shipyards

France's Economy and Finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, announced nationalization decision at a press conference today France's Economy and Finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, announced nationalization decision at a press conference today

JULY 27, 2017 — France's Economy and Finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, told a press conference today that France has exercised its right of first refusal with regard to the acquisition of shipbuilder STX France and has temporarily nationalized the company. He said that the decision was taken in full agreement with the President Emmanuel Macron.

He said that decision has a sole objective: to defend the strategic interests of France in the area of naval construction.

The Saint-Nazaire shipyards are a unique industrial tool in France, Mr. Le Maire said, adding that the government wants to guarantee to employees, customers, the region and also to all French citizens that the exceptional competences of the Saint-Nazaire shipyards in terms of shipbuilding and jobs will remain in France.

He said that Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri had been made an offer to take a 50% stake in the shipyards along with operational control and that this offer remains on the table.

Mr. Le Maire said that he would go to Rome next week for discussions on the issue with Italy's minister of the economy and minister of economic development.

He added that nationalization of the yards was a temporary matter intended to give France more time to negotiate, in the best possible conditions, Fincantieri's participation in building a solid and ambitious European the Saint-Nazaire shipyards in order to build a solid and ambitious European project.

You can read the full text of his statement HERE

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