US industrial giant General Electric is in discussions to take over France's Alstom in a deal which could cost more than $13 billion, Bloomberg reported. General Electric declined to comment on what a spokesman referred to as "rumors and speculation," but the report said an agreement could be announced next week. Alstom, like GE, builds trains and power generation equipment, but its specialty is the high-speed TGV trains and rail-signalling technology that the US company lacks. The American firm is flush with cash, while Alstom, hit by the European slowdown, has been selling assets and cutting staff to reduce debt. The report said that French builder and telecoms group Bouygues, a major Alstom shareholder, is backing the deal.