July 23, 2018 / 2:47 PM / a month ago

EU opens in-depth investigation into German copper merger

BRUSSELS, July 23 (Reuters) - The European Commission said on Monday it had started an in-depth investigation into German copper producer KME’s purchase of German peer Mansfelder Kupfer und Messing (MKM), noting it was concerned such a deal would reduce competition.

The Commission, which acts as the competition watchdog in the European Union, said it was worried the combination of the two companies could lead to higher prices for rolled copper products and sanitary copper tubes.

“The transaction would eliminate competition between the companies in many EU countries where the supply of sanitary copper tubes is already particularly concentrated,” the Commission said.

The Commission now has until November 29 to assess the deal. (Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; editing by Philip Blenkinsop)

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