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Shell says China clears merger with BG

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BEIJING: Deals | Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:23am EST

China has given unconditional clearance to a proposed merger between Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and BG Group (BG.L), clearing the final key regulatory hurdle for the $70-billion tie-up, Shell said on Monday.

The clearance means the pre-conditional approval process is complete, the Anglo-Dutch company said in a statement.

Prior to the approval, industry sources told Reuters that Chinese authorities were pressing Shell to sweeten long-term gas supply contracts as the world’s top energy consumer faces a large surplus of the supplies as a demand boom at home falters.

“We will now seek approval from both sets of shareholders as we move toward deal completion in early 2016,” Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said, according to the company statement.

Australia approved the merger earlier this month, leaving China as the last regulatory hurdle to the deal.

Together with BG, Shell would supply around 30 percent of China’s natural gas imports by 2017.

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