EU expected to veto Fincantieri's Chantiers bid due to lack of concessions - sources

BRUSSELS/MILAN, March 13 (Reuters) - Italian shipyard Fincantieri has not offered any concessions to head off EU antitrust concerns about its planned bid for France’s Chantiers de l’Atlantique, giving regulators no choice but to block the deal, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

A veto by European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager would deal a serious blow to Italy’s bid to create a European industrial champion in shipbuilding to better compete with Asian rivals.

Fincantieri declined to comment. The Commission could not immediately be reached for comment.

The European Commission opened a full-scale investigation into the deal at the end of October, saying that the deal between two global leaders in an already concentrated and capacity-constrained market could push up prices for cruise ships.

Earlier this week sources said that Fincantieri risked an EU antitrust veto because of the difficulty of addressing regulators’ concerns. According to sources the deadline to propose concessions was this week.

Earlier this week EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said that the Fincantieri bid for Chantiers de l’Atlantique remained an open case and the European Union would take a decision by the end of April. (Reporting by Foo Yun Chee in Brussels and Elisa Anzolin in Milan; editing by Agnieszka Flak)