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Final approval for Shell mega-merger as BG Group shareholders vote in favour of the £36bn deal

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By LAURA CHESTERS FOR THE DAILY MAIL: 29 JAN 2016

One of the largest takeovers in history finally got the go-ahead yesterday after BG Group shareholders followed those at Royal Dutch Shell in approving the £36billion deal.

At a meeting in London, 99.53 per cent of BG shareholders voted in favour, a day after 83 per cent of Shell investors approved the deal that was first announced last April.

Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden said: ‘BG adds attractive deep water and integrated gas positions and will act as a catalyst for accelerating the reshaping of our business. 

‘We look forward to delivering the benefits of the combination as quickly as possible following completion.’

Van Beurden will be closely watched once the deal completes on February 15. He has promised huge cuts in spending and jobs, including culling 3 per cent of the combined 100,000 workforce. 

He will also now proceed with the sale of more than £20billion of assets which he has said he will sell by 2018. Cost savings are pencilled in at £2.5billion.

Shell and BG will both reveal their full-year results next week.

Although the oil price rebounded yesterday above $34 it is still well below its summer 2014 peak of $115 and experts believe it will not rise much above $37 this year.

The takeover of BG comes nearly two decades after the company was created out of British Gas. 

BG chief executive Helge Lund, who joined BG just weeks before the merger was announced, will step down. Shell executive Huibert Vigeveno, who has been heading integration planning, will become transitional chief executive.

Shell rose 2.3 per cent or 34p to 1496p and BG rose 1.4 per cent or 14.5p to 1044p.

The UK Government is making £20million of cash available for surveys in the North Sea in a bid to aid the struggling oil and gas sector. 

Prime Minister David Cameron announced the funding on a visit to Aberdeen which has been struggling with thousands of job losses.

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