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Greece privatisation starts with Opap sale

Greece's first big privatisation deal has happened with investment fund Emma Delta successfully buying 33 per cent of Greek gambling monopoly Opap.

Emma Delta's initial bid of €622 million ($812 million) had been rejected by the Greek authorities for being too low. However the deal went through after the fund - which was the only bidder for the stake - increased its offer.

Greek finance minister Yannis Stournaras confirmed the privatisation had been successfully completed but refrained from giving any details and did not disclose the final amount paid.

The Greek-Czech fund had been urged to bid €650 million, even though the stock market actually values Opap at €726 million.

As part of the international bailout Greece received, it is is obliged to raise €9.5 billion from asset sales by 2016.

The European Union and the International Monetary Fund have committed to €240 billion since 2010 in rescue loans for Greece after its economy collapsed.

By Asim Shah