August 9, 2018 / 11:49 PM / in 4 months

UPDATE 1-Australia's Bega Cheese says regulator approved Saputo dairy plant purchase

(Adds context on Koroit sale, Murray Goulburn deal)

Aug 10 (Reuters) - Dairy products maker Bega Cheese Ltd said on Friday the Australian competition regulator had approved its purchase of Saputo Inc’s dairy processing facility at Koroit in the state of Victoria.

Bega Cheese will buy the facility from a local arm of Saputo for A$250 million ($184 million). The deal was announced in July.

Saputo, which is Canada’s largest cheesemaker, had decided to sell the plant after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) had raised concerns about its $1 billion acquisition of dairy products maker Murray Goulburn Co-operative .

The ACCC had said it would allow the deal only if Saputo agreed to sell the Koroit plant in Victoria, which accounts for about a fifth of Australia’s national milk production. The regulator was concerned the deal would result in lower prices being paid to dairy farmers.

Murray Goulburn shareholders had voted in favour of the deal earlier this year, which concluded in May. ($1 = 1.3572 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin and Chris Gallagher)

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