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European regulators approve CVRD purchase of Inco

European regulators approve CVRD purchase of Inco

European regulators have approved CVRD's purchase of the world's second-largest nickel miner for 19 billion Canadian dollars (US$17 billion, euro13.3 billion), all but clearing the way for the Brazilian company to buy Canada's Inco Ltd., CVRD announced Thursday.
The move by the European Commission leaves Companhia Vale do Rio Doce SA lacking only one more regulatory blessing for the deal _ from Investment Canada officials who evaluate foreign purchases of Canadian businesses.
CVRD, the world's largest iron ore miner, said Sept. 25 that the Canadian authority reserved the right to scrutinize the acquisition for up to a month but that a decision could come at any time.
CVRD has given Inco shareholders until Oct. 16 to tender their shares for 86 Canadian dollars ($76.90, euro60.17) each.
Inco originally planned a friendly merger with copper producer Phelps Dodge Corp. But the Phoenix, Arizona-based company's stock and cash offer didn't give as much value to shareholders as CVRD's unsolicited all-cash bid, analysts said.
Also in the bidding for Inco was Vancouver-based Teck Cominco Ltd., which pulled out of the race in the face of failed financing.
Also Thursday, CVRD chief executive Roger Agnelli denied market speculation that CVRD might be interested in boosting or selling its 50 percent stake in U.S. steelmaker California Steel Industries Inc. near Los Angeles.
"We have no intention to either buy a bigger share or to sell any part of our share," Agnelli told reporters after he inaugurated a new CVRD mining project in the central Brazilian state of Minas Gerais.
CVRD sees the U.S. steelmaker "as our entryway into the U.S. West Coast market," Agnelli added.
CVRD's American depository shares were up 3.3 percent, or 71 cents to US$22.45 (euro17.65), Thursday afternoon on the New York Stock Exchange. Inco shares rose 0.4 percent, or 30 cents to US$76.02 (euro59.76).


Updated : 2021-05-16 18:30 GMT+08:00