Merger in gas sector approved
Wednesday 16 May 2012
On 16 May, the European Commission cleared the proposed acquisition of joint control over the Angolan company Angola LNG (the joint venture) by BP of the UK, Chevron Global Energy of the US, Eni of Italy, Sociedade Nacional de Combustíveis de Angola (Sonangol) of Angola, and Total of France. The joint venture will be active in the production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Angola and the worldwide supply of LNG. The Commission found that the transaction would not raise competition concerns because of the joint venture’s moderate anticipated market share, the presence of a number of credible competitors in the market of wholesale of LNG, and competitors’ unchanged ability to access re-gasification terminals. The Commission’s investigation showed that although three of the parent companies (Total, Eni and BP) hold capacity rights in re-gasification terminals, they will not be able to shut out third parties from accessing them because EU law ensures third-party access to gas import infrastructures, including re-gasification terminals.