The U.S. Treasury said on Wednesday it will sell 200 million shares in General Motors Co and divest the rest of its holdings over the next 12 to 15 months, ending public ownership of the company rescued by taxpayers in 2009.

GM's $50 billion bailout comprised of nearly $7 billion in direct loans and $43 billion in bailout cash and bankruptcy aid.

The following is a timeline of events:

January 2009: GM receives first of four government funding installments - a $13.4 billion injection authorized by then-President George W. Bush under the emergency Troubled Asset Relief Program.

April 2009: GM gets $2 billion from President Barack Obama.

May 2009: GM receives further $4 billion under a third TARP installment.

June 2009: GM receives $30.1 billion from TARP under its bankruptcy arrangement.

April 2010: GM uses some of the bailout money that it did not need to repay $6.7 billion in outstanding loans.

November 2010: GM returns to public equity markets with a massive initial public offering. Treasury sells $13 billion of GM stock, leaving it with about 500 million shares.

December 2010: GM repurchases Treasury's $2.1 billion in preferred stock, leaving Treasury with only common stock.

December 2012: Treasury announces its planned exit from GM, selling 200 million shares to the company at $27.50 per share, for about $5.5 billion, and undertaking to sell the remaining 300 million shares over the next 12-15 months, starting January.

(Reporting by Alister Bull)