BRUSSELS, Nov 2 (Reuters) – The $19 billion mobile merger of Vodafone (VOD.L) and CK Hutchison in Britain will not raise competition concerns for EU antitrust regulators, according to a European Commission filing.
The companies sought approval from the European Competition Authority on October 30 for their bid to create the United Kingdom’s largest mobile operator.
The Commission, which set a December 6 deadline for its decision, is reviewing the deal under its simplified procedure.
It uses these procedures for mergers that are unlikely to give rise to competition concerns and where approval is a foregone conclusion.
The deal, on the other hand, is under intense scrutiny by Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority because it will reduce the number of networks from four to three, a threshold that regulators fear could reduce competition.