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China: Shell-BG takeover to test antitrust regulators

 |  April 12, 2015

Royal Dutch Shell’s $70 billion bid for BG Group Plc will put to the test a pledge by China’s antitrust regime to be more transparent, after it faced strong criticism last year from the United States and Europe.

China’s relatively new competition law has become one of the biggest wildcards for large cross-border deals in recent years, particularly where natural resources are concerned.

In 2013, China’s Ministry of Commerce said miner Xstrata had to sell off a prized Peruvian copper project in order for its $35 billion merger with Glencore to proceed, despite neither company owning any assets in China at the time. The combined company’s share of China’s copper market was also not high enough to warrant concerns by international norms.

Under this increased scrutiny, lawyers say there is a wish on the part of the agencies to develop a more professional image, which should help Shell’s case. Under China’s antitrust law MOFCOM can consider whether a merger would impact the country’s national industrial goals.


Full Content: The Wall Street Journal


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