World Bulletin / News Desk
The chief executive of Greece's privatisation agency, Costas Mitropoulos, has resigned, two government officials told Reuters on Thursday.
The new conservative-led government has made reviving the long-delayed privatisation drive a key part of its efforts to turn around the recession-hit economy, but has admitted delays stemming from repeat elections held this year.
"He has submitted his resignation," one senior government official said on condition of anonymity, without elaborating on why Mitropoulos was quitting.
"The government will move quickly with its privatisation programme in order to make up for lost ground and put the programme back on track," the official said.
In his first policy speech since taking office earlier this month, Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras promised to carry out reforms and privatisations as the country tries to regain credibility with its international lenders that saved it from bankruptcy.
Athens has targeted raising 3.2 billion euros in proceeds this year. It plans to privatise firms such as natural gas company DEPA, gas grid operator DESFA, Hellenic Petroleum and betting firm OPAP.
Mitropoulos told Reuters last week that a delay of a few months in the privatisation drive meant Athens would only be able to complete the sale of its state lottery and a building in Athens this year.
The agency's chairman Yannis Koukiadis resigned after a second parliamentary election was held in June after the first in May failed to produce a workable majority.Last Mod: 20 Temmuz 2012, 10:59