Italian government pushes back meeting for a second time, sources say

The Italian government this week postponed a meeting to discuss its response to the recent regulatory ruling that deems Vivendi to exercise control over TIM.

A government committee was due to meet on Monday to discuss the matter, but delayed the meeting until Tuesday, Reuters reported, citing two sources close to the matter.

It later added that the meeting will now take place on Thursday, having been rescheduled for after a bilateral meeting between Italy and France on Wednesday.

According to the newswire, the state will hit Vivendi with a financial penalty, but the fine will not exceed €300 million.

Earlier this month Italian market regulator Consob revealed that following an investigation it had deemed Vivendi to have de facto control over Italy’s telecoms incumbent.

Although Vivendi holds just 24% of TIM, formerly known as Telecom Italia, it has sufficient voting power to control the telco’s board and influence the direction of shareholder meetings, Consob said.

The ruling means Vivendi and TIM are in contravention of regulations that required them to inform the government of a change in control at the telco. Thus the government has the power to issue a fine, and there has also been talk of enforced asset sales.

TIM insists it will appeal the ruling.

Edited to add details of second delay.