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UPDATE 1-Italy passes decree to ward off foreign takeovers

From Reuters - October 13, 2017

(Adds details, minister quote)

By Giselda Vagnoni

ROME, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Italys cabinet on Friday passed a decree to force investors that build up minority stakes of at least 10 percent in Italian listed companies to disclose what their intentions are on final ownership.

The change, aimed at warding off hostile foreign takeovers, comes as French media company Vivendi is under scrutiny in Italy for its stake-building in Telecom Italia and in broadcaster Mediaset.

The new rules on takeovers signals protectionist sentiment is on the rise in Italy after years of relatively open approach to foreign acquisitions which French companies, in particular, have taken advantage of.

The decree also extends the governments so-called golden powers to block takeovers by non-EU companies to high-technology sectors, the cabinet said in a statement.

Italy is a country that is open to international investments but it demands that investors respect the rules and we safeguard our national interests like all the worlds large economies, Industry Minister Carlo Calenda said after the cabinet meeting.

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