Two Spanish ministries said Thursday that they asked the country's market regulator--the CNMV--to annul or revoke its authorization of Atlantia SpA's (ATL.MI) bid for Abertis Infraestructuras SA (ABE.MC).
The Ministry of Energy, Tourism and Digital Agenda and the Ministry of Public Works have given the CNMV a month to reply to the request, having said that the CNMV shouldn't have approved the deal without their prior consent.
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The ministries said that Atlantia was legally obliged to seek their authorization to take control over Abertis, as the company operates the majority of the country's toll roads, and requested that Atlantia now asks for government authorization to proceed with its bid.
Abertis also owns a majority stake in satellite company Hispasat SA, which the government views as a strategically-important national asset.
Atlantia said it has always complied with the CNMV's requirements and that it had previously told the two ministries that it would provide them with any information and documentation relating to the Abertis bid.
"We remain available to discuss any requirements of the government in this aspect," the company said in a statement.
The Ministry of Public Works said that Hochtief AG (HOT.XE)--the other bidder for Abertis--had sent an authorization request to the two ministries, which is currently being reviewed.
Atlantia's bid received the CNMV's approval in October, but Abertis doesn't have to issue a response until Hochtief's competing bid is approved by the regulator.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
December 08, 2017 05:20 ET (10:20 GMT)