The lottery may hand out biggest New Year prize

COMPILED FROM WIRE SERVICES
ISTANBUL
Published 29.11.2015 22:09

The Milli Piyango, Turkey's national lottery administration, which is set to be privatized, may deliver the biggest prize in its history at TL 55 million ($18.8 million) before it changes hand in an upcoming lottery.

If only one winner claims the prize, a special New Year's lottery by Milli Piyango, to be held on Dec. 31, will go down in the history of Turkey as the highest prize - though there is a probability of multiple winners.

The second biggest prize in the lottery will be TL 5 million, and Milli Piyango will deliver more than 2.9 million in smaller sums - with the total amount of prizes to amount to more than TL 289 million.

The biggest prize increased 175 percent in the past decade, according to figures.

The national lottery was privatized last year when a Turkish consortium of two companies won 10 years of operational rights by placing the highest bid at $2.7 billion. But a loss in the Turkish lira's value had forced the consortium to ask for extra time to finalize the privatization process. Authorities said the privatization would be concluded by the end of this year while former Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek said after the consortium's appeal to extend the timeframe that the process would continue with the second-highest bidder. The second bidder has a deadline until Dec. 10 to sign the licensing agreement.

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