Bayer-Monsanto: authorities are still investigating
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Bayer AG submitted "extensive commitments" to the European Commission to approve the acquisition of the US seed giant Monsanto, reports the German GMO information service Infodienst Gentechnik. The EU Commission has postponed its decision on competition approval of the transaction to 5 April.
According to a New York Post report, the Bayer group has begun to divest US parts of the company, such as a producer of vegetable seeds and an agricultural software specialist for sale. Earlier, large parts of the business with crop seeds such as oilseed rape, soya and cotton were sold to its competitor BASF. This package also includes the LibertyLink technology, which can make plants resistant to the herbicide glufosinate, and the appropriate Liberty pesticide. The purchase price - including the associated research facilities - amounts to 5.9 billion euros.
EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager is calling for these sales to ensure that there will continue to be competition in the seed and pesticide markets, even though Bayer AG will be the world's largest supplier after the acquisition of Monsanto. According to the Bayer spokesman, only half of the world's 30 or so authorities have to approve the takeover. The important antitrust officers in Europe, the USA and Brazil are still examining. The competition keepers have requested four million pages of documentation to check.
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