Greece plans to take over Exxon-owned companies

Greece's socialist government plans to nationalize refining and petrochemical companies owned by Exxon Corporation, the minister of industry and energy, Anastasios Peponis, said Wednesday.

The planned takeovers are the first to be announced since the Panhellenic Socialist Movement of Andreas Papandreou was swept to power in elections in October.

Mr. Peponis said the nationalization of the Exxon operations should not be regarded as setting a precedent for other privately owned refineries.

Exxon is apparently not too upset about the state takeovers, since its contracts are scheduled to expire soon.

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