Italian Fincantieri’s plan to acquire a majority stake in STX France was thwarted, after the country’s new government decided to temporarily nationalise the shipyard.
In particular, France’s President Emmanuel Macron ordered ‘temporary’ state control of the yard, in order to save French jobs and maintain the only shipyard capable of building aircraft carriers. The decision is said to be President Macron’s first major industrial policy decision.
French economy minister, Bruno Le Maire, said the government had “taken the decision to exercise the state’s pre-emption rights” to buy up the STX France shipyard, instead of allowing its sale.
According to the minister, the goal of this decision is to defend France’s strategic interests in shipbuilding, as Saint-Nazaire shipyards are “a unique industrial tool in France.”
However, the Minister also informed that the shipyards of Saint-Nazaire are not intended to remain under the control of the State. The negotiations with Italy will remain on table, but only on a basis that preserves the strategic interests of France, while associating Italy with French shipbuilding.