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EU gives conditional approval to Glencore-Xstrata agreement

BRUSSELS -- The European Commission on Thursday gave a conditional green light to the massive tie-up between Swiss mining giant Xstrata and commodities trader Glencore.

Shareholders of Glencore and Xstrata — both headquartered in the tax haven of Zoug in Switzerland — on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved a merger of the two firms to create a goliath capable of out-muscling nearly everyone in their field.

Glencore and Xstrata said last month they hoped the combined company, with a market capitalisation of around 67 billion euros (US$85.5 billion) and with a combined turnover of US$209.4 billion, could come into being by the end of the year.

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