France to sell up to 600 tonnes of gold

4th May 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 4 (AFP) - French Finance Minister Nicolas Sarkozy proposed Tuesday that 500-600 tonnes of gold held by the Bank of France be sold in the coming five years after an agreement with the central bank.

PARIS, May 4 (AFP) - French Finance Minister Nicolas Sarkozy proposed Tuesday that 500-600 tonnes of gold held by the Bank of France be sold in the coming five years after an agreement with the central bank.

The bank would hold the proceeds but the interest from the money raised would go to the state amounting EUR 200 million every year after the first year.

In April, Bank of France governor Christian Noyer said he was open to selling gold held by the bank as long as the proceeds did not go diirectly to state coffers.

In March, 15 central banks, including the European Central Bank and the Bank of France, agreed not to sell more than 500 tonnes of gold a year from 2004 to 2009.

The plan to sell gold was announced during Sarkozy's first major policy speech since being named late March and which included other plans to sell state assets such as real estate and industrial stakes to bring down the deficit.

© AFP

Subject: French news

 

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