Stellantis is planning to repay early a 6.3 billion euro ($7 billion) loan backed by the Italian government which its predecessor Fiat Chrysler secured at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, two sources familiar with the matter said on Thursday.
Repaying the loan possibly frees Stellantis from conditions the government attached to it, including preserving jobs at its Italian operations, making timely payments to providers, and financing domestic investments in particular for electric vehicles.
The repayment is imminent, one of the sources said.
The loan, which carries a three-year maturity, was provided to the automaker in June 2020 to its unit of Fiat Chrysler by Italy’s top lender Intesa Sanpaolo with credit export agency SACE giving a guarantee on 80% of the value.
CFO Richard Palmer said in October the state-backed loan was repayable beginning from March 2022, but he said at the time that no decision had been taken on the repayment.