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France to sell part of stake in Paris airports

PARIS (AP) -- France is preparing to sell part of its stake in the company that runs the Paris airports and use the proceeds to help boost the ailing French economy.

In a statement Thursday, the government said it was looking to sell up to 10 million shares — which would reduce the total state investment to about 50 percent from around 60 percent. No further financial details were offered but the sale could raise up to 700 million euros ($906 million) based on Wednesday's closing share price.

Finance minister Pierre Moscovici said the sale would free up funds that could be invested in new sectors. France is in recession and unemployment stands at 11 percent.

The sale will happen off market and be geared toward long-term investors, including potentially employees.