BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Swedish refiner Nynas will win unconditional EU antitrust approval for its proposed acquisition of most units of Royal Dutch Shell’s (RDSa.L) Harburg refinery, a person familiar with the matter said on Thursday.
Nynas, which announced the deal for the 100,000 barrels per day (BPD) refinery in southern Hamburg in 2011, sought approval from the European Commission in February this year.
The EU competition authority opened an extensive investigation into the planned takeover in March, worried that the merged company would be the sole producer of naphthenic base oils in Europe.
These oils are used to produce industrial grease, metalworking fluids, adhesives, inks, insoluble sulfur, industrial rubber and fertilizers.
Nynas has managed to allay the regulatory concerns without offering any concessions, the source said.
“There are indications that the deal will be unconditionally cleared,” the person said.
The spokesman for competition policy at the Commission, Antoine Colombani, declined to comment. The EU executive has set a September 6 deadline for its decision.
The European refinery business has seen a wave of consolidation, hit by weak profit margins and high oil prices.
Reporting by Foo Yun Chee, additional reporting by Barbara Lewis, editing by William Hardy