UPDATE 1-Argentine court halts Telecom Italia sale

(Recasts; Adds details, quote from ruling, byline)

By Karina Grazina

BUENOS AIRES, Feb 2 (BestGrowthStock) – An Argentine court on
Tuesday halted a government anti-monopoly ruling that ordered
Italy’s Telecom Italia (TLIT.MI: ) to sell its holdings in
leading Argentine phone company, Telecom Argentina (TEC2.BA: )
(TEO.N: ).

“The foreign companies that were ordered to sell … were
not listened to or warned so that they could express their
explanations and arguments,” said the ruling by Court A of the
Economic Criminal Chamber.

Argentina’s antitrust commission ordered Telecom Italia to
sell its holdings in Telecom Argentina last year following a
two-year probe that was launched when Spain’s Telefonica
(TEF.MC: ) invested in the Italian company.

That deal meant Telefonica, which controls Argentina’s
other leading telephone operator, Telefonica de Argentina
(TEA2.BA: ), also had an indirect stake in Telecom Argentina.

Telecom Italia has tried to delay the sale of its Argentine
holdings, resisting mounting government pressure as it holds
out for a better price [ID:nN28174034].

Earlier this year, a court upheld an appeal by Telecom
Italia against an Aug. 25 deadline for the sale
[ID:nN18185253].

Stock Analysis

(Writing by Helen Popper and Fiona Ortiz; Editing by Gerald E.
McCormick and Maureen Bavdek)

UPDATE 1-Argentine court halts Telecom Italia sale