Greece sells railway company to Italian state operator

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (background right), and his Italian counterpart Paolo Gentiloni (background left), look on as head of Greece's Asset Development Fund Lila Tsitsogianopoulou (r) and Renato Mazzoncini CEO of the Italian Railway holding company Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane, sign a final agreement for the sale of Trainose during the Greek-Italian Intergovernmental Conference at the museum of Asian art in the island of Corfu, Thursday.

TAGS: Privatizations, Transport

Greece has agreed to sell its railways company to Italy's own state-owned operator for 45 million euros ($54 million) as part of its privatization drive.

The country's Asset Development Fund said Thursday that the sale of Trainose to Ferrovie Dello Stato Italiane completed a four-year process. Greece has pledged to carry out an ambitious privatization program as part of its international bailout, under which it has received billions of euros in emergency loans in return for overhauling its economy.

Many of the privatizations have been met with resistance from unions. No trains were running on Thursday as the railway workers' union called a 24-hour strike to protest the company's sale. [AP]