THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: EU OKs Repsol Buy Of Shell LPG Operations In Portugal: “The European Union Commission Thursday cleared Spanish oil giant Repsol YPF SA's acquisition of Shell Transport & Trading Co. PLC's Portuguese liquid petroleum gas operations” (ShellNews.net) Posted 4 March 05
DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
BRUSSELS -- The European Union Commission Thursday cleared Spanish oil giant Repsol YPF SA's (REP) acquisition of Shell Transport & Trading Co. PLC's (SC,RD) Portuguese liquid petroleum gas operations.
In a statement, the E.U. Commission said "the transaction will create a third significant market player" along with Petroleos de Portugal (PDP.YY) and BP PLC (BP) and therefore "the combination of the two businesses will not signifcantly impede effective competition" in the Portuguese gas market or the rest of the E.U.
Instead, regulators said they "came to the conclusion that Repsol, in its new position, will be better able to compete than it was prior to the transaction."
Repsol strengthens its position on the Iberian peninsula becoming the third-largest gas supplier in Portugal with a 21% market share, up from 5% previously.
Petroleos de Portugal, now known as Galp, remains the market leader and controls "a signficant proportion" of gas facilities and infrastructure, the regulators added.
Repsol first entered the Portuguese gas market in 1994. But until this deal it didn't have any gas infrastructure in Portugal and regulators said this had hampered its growth. Shell already sold last year its oil products and lubricants businesses in Portugal to Repsol.
-By William Echikson, Dow Jones Newswires; 32-2-741 1482; firstname.lastname@example.org