MILAN (Reuters) - Telecom Italia CEO Marco Patuano said on Friday discussions with the government to buy fiber optic network firm Metroweb had not gone in the right direction but he did not close the door to resuming talks at the right conditions.
Speaking on a conference call with analysts, Patuano said Telecom Italia was aiming to reach full ownership of partly state-owned Metroweb but was ready to give the government a role to ensure equal network access to rival operators.
"It has to be clear that operations must be in our hands," Patuano said, adding that if there was a way to accelerate investment and create value Telecom Italia "was ready to discuss" a possible deal over Metroweb.
Sources close to the matter said last month that Cassa Depositi e Presiti (CDP), owner of the state's stake in Metroweb, had rejected a proposal by Telecom Italia to gradually take over full ownership.
(Reporting by Danilo Masoni)