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Groupe ADP shares rise as French Government sets the scene to sell shares

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Groupe ADP shares ended the European trading day higher Wednesday, following news the French Government is paving the way for it to sell a number of its shares – including the international airport operator.

The French Government currently holds some 50.6% of all ADP shares, something a new Bill will mean is no longer a necessary requirement.

Groupe ADP shares closed 5.99% higher at €196.50. Engie shares, another company the French Government has shares in that will be affected by the new Bill once it becomes law, meanwhile, edged 0.84% lower to close at €13.56.

French Government sets new Bill in motion

New laws allowing the sale of the Government’s stakes in Groupe ADP and Engie, among others, will be presented to parliament Monday, Government officials said in a Tuesday briefing.

However, with much of the detail still to be discussed and agreed, its unlikely the Bill will pass into law until early 2019.

Once the Bill is passed, it will mean the French Government has to sell some of its stakes in companies it owns a large number of shares in. It’s thought the French Government could raise between €15-18 billion from this action.

The profits would likely be put towards a combination of reducing Government debt and investing in new, innovative technology projects.

Possible Bill details

As it stands, the Bill that’s expected to be put forward next week will mean the French Government no longer has to own more than 50% of Groupe ADP. It will also remain it no longer needs to hold one-third of the voting rights of Engie.

However, it’s likely a number of conditions will need to be met before the French Government can sell its stock.

One analyst said that once the Bill becomes law, the French government could choose to sell its entire Groupe ADP stake. Santander analyst Vittorio Carelli raised his Groupe ADP price target to €230 from €162.

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