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Reports: AIB share sale could be triggered May 31

Ireland's finance minister will decide within the next 48 hours whether to go ahead with the part-privatization of Allied Irish Banks Plc, Prime Minister Enda Kenny said May 30.

Sources told The Irish Times the same day that the investment banks advising the government on the potential IPO were poised to recommend proceeding with the transaction, which could be announced the morning of May 31. The government is considering selling off 25% of AIB, in which it holds a 99.8% stake following the lender's crisis-era bailout.

Kenny said in parliament that Finance Minister Michael Noonan had told a cabinet meeting that he expects to make the decision within 48 hours, according to Reuters.

Kenny is expected to stand aside as Irish prime minister June 2, when his Fine Gael party is slated to choose a new leader. Noonan will also step down, with The Irish Times having previously reported that he would likely approve the AIB flotation before he does so.