Sell-off deals by the weekend

Athens intends to announce a number of privatization deals by the end of the week, according to government sources, but Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos scaled back the target for state asset sales amid slumping stock values and delays in implementing the program.

?We will probably be announcing an agreement for three contracts this week,? the ministry?s general secretary for privatizations, Giorgos Christodoulakis, told state radio on Monday.

The deals will likely include extensions to the contracts for gaming company OPAP and Athens International Airport, with the sale of permits for video lotteries also expected.

However Venizelos said in Washington late on Sunday that the government will only collect about 4 billion euros from privatizations by the end of the year, versus a target of 5 billion euros.

So far the government has only collected 400 million euros from the sale of a 10 percent stake in OTE telecom to German giant Deutsche Telekom in June.

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