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Chile: FNE launches investigation on SQM – Tianqi sale

 |  June 19, 2018

Chile’s National Economic Prosecutor’s Office (FNE) announced Friday that it has launched an investigation into the effects that the acquisition by Tianqui of 24% of mining company SQM, the main lithium producer in Chile, can cause to the market. The case has been closely watched internationally due to Tianqui’s important position in the world lithium market.

Until now, the issue had been held at the admissibility stage by the FNE, the phase in which all complaints received are submitted and considered, and which allows for a preliminary examination to determine if there is enough to merit an investigation.

In May 2018, Nutrien Ltd and Tianqi announced an agreement whereby the latter would acquire about 24% of SQM, shares that should be sold to meet conditions set out in a separate agreement by the competition authorities of India and China.

In its investigation, the FNE will seek to verify or rule out whether the risks to free competition in Chile, which could lead to the participation of Tianqi in SQM, are plausible and of a relevant magnitude. If during its investigation the existence of relevant risks for competition in Chile is ruled out, the case can be quickly filed and closed.

Full Content: BiobioChile

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