February 2, 2018 / 7:33 AM / 10 months ago

Australia's AWE raises concerns over Chinese co's bid with takeovers panel

(Reuters) - Takeover target AWE Ltd has raised concerns over a bid for the company by state-owned China Energy Reserves and Chemical Group (CERCG) with the Australian Government Takeovers Panel, the regulatory body said in a statement on Friday.

AWE, in its application, said that CERCG’s bid fails to address a rival offer by Mineral Resources and does not sufficiently disclose whether funding is available for CERCG to carry out its bid, the panel said.

AWE believed shareholders did not have enough information to properly assess the merits of CERCG’s bid and sought an interim order to restrain the despatch of CERCG’s bid statement.

The Takeovers Panel said it had not made a decision on whether to conduct proceedings over AWE’s application.

CERCG is the lowest bidder in a three-way bidding war for the oil and gas explorer. Earlier this week, AWE gave Mineral Resources till midnight Friday to match a A$594 million ($480 million) takeover offer from Mitsui & Co, or it would back the Japanese bid as a superior offer.

AWE’s stock has risen more than 80 percent, since it received CERCG’s takeover bid in late November.

Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin

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