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·  March 31th, 2009 , Barcelona

abertis opts for growth based on consolidation and strengthening of its current stake-holdings

El proceso de diversificación e internacionalización de estos últimos años sitúa al Grupo en una posición de fortaleza para absorber el impacto de la actual crisis económica

In a climate of market and economic uncertainty, the abertis Group adapts it growth policy in two ways: to consolidate the growth made over recent years and to strengthen its position within its existing assets. This was highlighted today by Isidre Fainé, Chairman and Salvador Alemany, Chief Executive Officer of abertis at the Shareholders' General Meeting which the company held in Barcelona.

The Chairman of abertis confirmed the “prioritisation of possibilities of strengthening our position within companies and business in which we are already present; assets that we know, and with this strengthening of our position we can also gain greater solidity, stability and visibility in our consolidation scope, the balance sheet and the profit and loss account”.

For his part, the CEO of abertis similarly emphasised that “we want to reinforce our position within current minority stake holdings in such a way that we are permitted a greater level of consolidation in the profit and loss account. Salvador Alemany pointed out that in that case “we would certainly incur debt, but solvency will be seen to be reinforced if we also acquire a greater proportion of operating margin”.

According to the CEO of abertis, the company will continue “to explore its target markets and to collect information on potential operations for expansion in the future, thus ensuring its readiness once the market stabilises”.

“In a time of uncertainty in the markets and the economy” stressed the Chairman of abertis, “we provide the consistency of a model based on rigour, ambition, analysis, opportunity and prudence”. He believes that we are now facing a reality "in which the strategies for growth and expansion shall show a greater dependency on the resources owned and on the solidity and solvency of the financial statement and less on credit and leverage". Isidre Fainé concluded this chapter remembering that “maintaining the same long term vision which we have worked with all these years and avoiding exposure to unnecessary risks, we now reaffirm the option for rigour and prudence and consider this a period of consolidation”.

In an earlier statement, Chairman of abertis, Isidre Fainé, referring to the current world economic situation observed that “the fiscal and monetary measures implemented by the world’s leading governments, together with advances expected from the G-20 summit this week, provide the elements fundamental to expectations that the economies of both Spain and the rest of the world will return to a growth situation from the beginning of the next fiscal year”.

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