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Press release N° 193 of 12/19/2008

The MEF announces the issuance of state bonds, to be auctioned on 30 December 2008 and with settlement date on 2 January 2009, consisting of:

CCTs - (Treasury Credit Certificates)

start date: 1 September 2008; seventh tranche

maturity: 1 September 2015

six-month coupon: equal to the yield on six-month BOT ('Buoni Ordinari del Tesoro' - Treasury Bonds) in relation to the auction held at the end of the month prior to the start date of the six-monthly payment, plus a spread of 0.15 percentage points; the current coupon, with a maturity date of 1 March 2009, is 2.32%.

BTPs - (Long Term Treasury Bonds)

start date: 1 September 2008; ninth tranche

maturity: 1 September 2011

coupon: 4.25%

start date: 1 September 2008; fifth tranche

maturity: 1 March 2019

coupon: 4.50%

The above-mentioned bonds will be placed using the uniform-price auction mechanism, with allotment price and issuance amount being set discretionally within an issuance interval to be announced in a subsequent press release.

The amount placed will be determined excluding bids at prices considered to be unfavourable on the basis of market conditions.

Italian, EU and non EU banks as well as the brokerage companies and EU and non-EU investment businesses referred to in the decrees authorising the issuance of the above mentioned bonds are eligible to participate in the auction.

The dealers referred to above may bid on their own account or on behalf of third parties.

Each bid submitted must state the relevant offer price. Each dealer may submit up to a maximum of three bids, each at a different price and for a minimum amount of 500,000 euros nominal capital. Any bid below the minimum amount will not be considered. Each bid must not exceed the issuance amount; any bids in excess of the issuance amount will be admitted only up to that amount.

Prices may vary by a minimum of one euro cent; any variations will be rounded up. The minimum sum subscribable is 1,000 euros.

Bids from dealers must be submitted by the deadlines set down in the calendar below and by means of electronic bid sent to the Banca d'Italia via the National Interbanking Network in accordance with the technical procedures established by the Banca d'Italia and familiar to dealers.

In the event that not all bids at the uniform price can be accepted, there shall be an allotment pro rata, with rounding as necessary.

The allotment price shall be announced by way of a press release, which shall also state the amounts allocated to the specialists at the last three auctions.

Dealers participating in the auction shall arrange for the bonds allocated to be assigned to subscribers, without any charges being made in addition to the allotment price.

Settlement of the bonds allocated by dealers shall be at the allotment price and with payment of daily interest from the day following the start date of the current coupon to the day of settlement.

As payment for collecting bids from the public, commission shall be paid to the said dealers, commensurate with the nominal amount of bonds allocated, being:

- 0.30% for CCTs

- 0.20% for BTPs 4.25% 1.9.2008/2011

- 0.40% for BTPs 4.50% 1.9.2008/1.3.2019

The public shall be able to reserve bonds via the above mentioned groups of dealers by the deadline set down in the calendar; brokers shall be able to request a payment on account of the nominal amount reserved assecurity for completion of subscription.

On the settlement date, subscribers shall pay the sum due for the bonds allocated, on the basis of the allotment price, as well as daily interest due. A receipt will be issued on payment.

The calendar for subscriptions is as follows:

  CCTs BTPs maturity 1/9/2011 BTPs maturity 1/3/2019
Public to reserve by 29 December 2008 29 December 2008 29 December 2008
Submission of bids to auction: by 11.00am on 30 December 2008 30 December 2008 30 December 2008
Settlement of subscriptions 2 January 2009 2 January 2009 2 January 2009
Daily interest payable 123 123 123

State bond specialist dealers are eligible to participate in the placing of state bonds that shall take place automatically in addition to the issuance auctions.

The additional auction will be held at 3:30pm on the same day of 30 December 2008.

The offer of an additional tranche is, for each issuance, fixed at a maximum sum of no more than 10% of the nominal amount offered.

Specialists who did not participate in the issuance auction shall not be eligible to participate in the additional placing.

The additional allocation shall be at the allotment price set at the auction for the current issuance.

The procedures and conditions for the participation of specialists in the additional allocations are set forth in the relevant decrees authorising the issuance of the above mentioned bonds.

Rome 12/19/2008