Go-ahead for cement merger

Go-ahead for cement merger
Published: 30 July 2007

The Protection of Competition Committee yesterday gave the green light to the Cyprus Cement Company and the Vassiliko Cement Company to merge, saying the merger was compatible with competition rules.

A brief statement said the decision was taken after consultations and exchanges of opinions, and following a report into the merger.

Reports over the past few days said the merger proposal was causing problems within the committee, which met for three days running before reaching their decision.

According to the reports, there was concern within the Committee that the merger might produce a cement monopoly. Strong objections had been made earlier in the year from the construction industry, fearing the consequences of a marriage between the only two cement producers on the island.

It is believed that the two companies have given written assurances that in the event the merger was approved by the Committee, they would not cause problems over the import of cement by other companies, and would not increase the price of cement at least until the end of 2008 or until March 2009.