Dow Chemical, DuPont Get Antitrust Clearance From US DoJ For Proposed Merger

DuPont and Dow Chemical Co have received approval from U.S. antitrust authorities for a merger of their operations on condition that the companies sell certain crop protection products and other assets, according to a court filing on Thursday.

The two oldest, biggest chemical companies in the country can now live happily ever after together (minus a few products), as federal antitrust regulators have given the green light to this $130 billion mega-merger.

Both companies are making concessions - agreeing to sell certain parts of their operations - in order to ensure competition remains alive in their respective markets.

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The Justice Department said the planned divestitures would resolve an anti-trust lawsuit filed jointly on Thursday with three state attorneys general over concerns USA farmers could be harmed by a lack of market competition for crop protection products and food packaging. It also required Dow to sell its global ethylene acrylic acid copolymers and ionomers business, which supplies products used in food and specialty packaging, adhesives, thermoplastic powder coatings, metal pipe coatings, wood plastic composites and molded durable and sporting goods. The companies say if approval is granted, there would be no further approvals required in the US for the merger to close.

The Dow logo is seen on a building in downtown Midland, Michigan, May 14, 2015.

The Dow-DuPont merger cleared its final US hurdle Thursday.

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Critics have complained the merger will increase costs for farmers by reducing competition in the seed and farm chemical markets.

Lawmakers are speaking out about the Dow-Dupont approved merger.

Once the merger is completed, the combined company plans to split into three independent companies by 2019.

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Dow and DuPont said in a statement on Thursday that the deal would create efficiencies worth $3 billion and growth synergies of $1 billion. The companies maintain their commitment to closing the merger in August 2017 with any spin-offs happening within 18 months of closing.

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