New Delhi: India’s competition watchdog has approved Bayer’s proposed $66-billion acquisition of US biotech firm Monsanto, subject to modifications.
The approval comes as Monsanto faces opposition in India over the promotion of genetically modified crops and issues of royalty and patents.
Competition Commission of India tweeted on Tuesday that it cleared the “acquisition of Monsanto by Bayer AG, subject to compliance of certain modifications.” The deal was announced in September 2016.
The CCI had launched a public consultation process in January to determine whether the merger between the global giants to create the world’s largest seed and pesticide company would have any adverse impact on competition in the country.
India is among the 30 countries where approval is needed for the merger of the worldwide operations of the two companies.
The major approvals still required are from the US Department of Justice and the regulators in Canada and Mexico.
Bayer said in a statement that the CCI has conditionally approved its proposed acquisition of Monsanto.
“Obtaining clearance from the CCI is another milestone towards the global acquisition of Monsanto. The combination brings together two different, but highly complementary businesses,” Bayer said in a statement.
The German company said its combination with Monsanto will create a global leader in agriculture with a broad portfolio, providing superior product offerings and tailor-made solutions to farmers across all crops in all regions.
The Bayer group has been present in India since 1896 and it has two divisions — crop science and pharmaceuticals.
The group has one listed entity in India — Bayer CropScience.