BRUSSELS Jan 6 The European Commission said on
Monday it had rejected Berlin's request to refer to the German
competition authority a proposed takeover by Swiss cement maker
Holcim of some of Mexican rival Cemex's
Holcim intends to acquire part of Cemex's activities in
cement, ready-mix concrete and aggregates in western Germany and
a small number of plants and sites in France and the
The German competition authority had asked to review the
proposed deal itself, arguing that it threatened to
significantly affect competition in the cement markets of
northern and western Germany.
However, the Commission, which acts as the competition
authority in the 28-nation bloc, said the deal would affect
cement markets outside Germany, such as parts of Belgium, the
Netherlands and the northeast of France.
"The Commission concluded that the geographic scope of the
affected cement markets is wider than national and that
therefore the Commission cannot refer the assessment of the
transaction to Germany," it said in a statement.
The Commission announced last October it was opening an
in-depth investigation into the proposed takeover. It has until
March 31 to take a final decision.