Italy economy minister says up to the market to decide on Telecom Italia

FILE PHOTO: First voting session to elect speaker of the Senate in Rome

ROME (Reuters) - Italian Economy Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti said on Wednesday it is now up to the market and not the government to decide on the future of former phone monopoly Telecom Italia (TIM).

"We have done what the state was supposed to do, now the market will evaluate whether to venture in other directions", Giorgetti told reporters in parliament.

TIM is planning to sell its landline grid to KKR in a 22-billion-euro ($23.9 billion) deal aimed at cutting debt, but questions over the plan resurfaced this month as shares nosedived after a financial targets presentation.

One of TIM's minority shareholders, Merlyn Partners, said on Wednesday that the debt-laden company should also sell its Brazilian unit this year as part of its radical restructuring, challenging the strategy laid out by TIM's CEO Pietro Labriola.

(Reporting by Giuseppe Fonte, writing by Alvise Armellini, editing by Gavin Jones)