France Threatens to Nationalize STX France; Backs Away from Deal

France appears to be backing down on its deal to sell 66.66 percent of STX France to Fincantieri. Instead, it is offering to split the ownership with the Italian shipbuilding company equally, and has threatened to nationalize the company if Fincantieri does not accept its offer.

Fincantieri has previously agreed to pay 79.5 million euro for 66.66 percent of STX France, which is being sold following the collapse of its parent company, South Korean STX. But now there seem to be concerns in France that it they lose control of the yard, jobs may be lost in Saint Nazaire.

French government officials have been cited that nationalization will give them more time to find a better shareholder deal.

Fincantieri signed the deal under the former French government of President Francois Hollande and this is now the first industrial action taken by the new government of President Emmanual Macron.

France allowed the Korean company to hold majority ownership, and Fincantieri CEP Giuseppe Bono has been quoted to say that he sees no reasons why Italians should be treated any lesser than Koreans. At this, point Fincantieri appears poised to walk away from the deal unless it obtains control of the French company.

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