Two Russian bidders have emerged as frontrunners in a flagship sell-off expected to raise more than €1.5bn for Athens, putting the Greek government in a dilemma as it seeks to meet privatisation targets set by international lenders.
The emergence of Gazprom and Sintez, a private natural gas company, as strongly placed to acquire Greece’s state-owned natural gas group has prompted warnings by the EU and US against opening the Greek market to Russian interests.
“It begs the question – what if the Russians make us an offer we can’t refuse?” a senior Greek official said. “We are under pressure from the troika (the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund) to raise as much money as we can from privatisation.”
(source: Financial Times)
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