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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

RusAl Merger at Final Stage

Bulgarian anti-monopoly regulators ruled Monday in favor of the planned three-way merger of Russian aluminum producers RusAl and SUAL with the aluminum assets of Swiss-based commodities trader Glencore, Vedomosti reported.

Approval from Bulgaria was the last hurdle before the merger of the world's largest aluminum producer could go through. The European Commission and Russia also cleared the deal in February.

Now that all the necessary authorities have ruled in favor, the assets of the three companies could be merged as soon as March 1, Vedomosti said.

However, Russia may have had second thoughts about the merger, with the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service making its ruling conditional and imposing additional conditions, Mineweb.com reported Saturday.

These criteria include the implementation of all outstanding supply and delivery contracts, in particular for military plants, an obligation to supply Russian plants with metal to meet their consumption capacity, and disclosure on how the firm carries out its trading activities.

A candidate for chairmanship of the new company is current SUAL CEO and former BHP-Billiton president, Brian Gilbertson. Media reports, however, have suggested that he might not take up the post -- either because the financial incentive is too low or because of objections from the Kremlin.