AIG Close to $35B Sale—and $16B Bailout Payback Asian unit to be bought by British Prudential By Jane Yager, Newser Staff Posted Mar 1, 2010 4:00 AM CST 0 comments Comments FILE - In this Sept. 17, 2008 file photo, the AIG logo is shown in New York. AIG said Friday, Feb. 26, 2010, it lost $8.87 billion in the fourth quarter as it paid down some of the billions of dollars... (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, file) (Newser) – A British company is about to buy the Asian unit of insurance giant AIG in a $35 billion deal that would enable AIG to make the biggest repayment yet toward its $180 billion bailout debt to the US government. British Prudential's purchase of Hong Kong-based AIG unit AIA would yield the government $16 billion, the New York Times reports. The deal still has to be approved by shareholders and clear some regulatory hurdles; the transaction will probably close in the third quarter. Since its federal bailout, AIG has been trying to sell off its businesses to pay down bailout loans.