EU antitrust regulators extend deadline for IAG-Air Europa deal to Dec. 3 By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Iberia and Air Europa airplanes are parked at a tarmack at Adolfo Suarez Barajas airport amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Madrid, Spain, December 15, 2020. REUTERS/Susana Vera

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – EU antitrust enforcers have extended their deadline for a decision on British Airways and Iberia owner International Airlines Group (LON:)’s 500-million-euro ($589.5 million) bid for Spain’s Air Europa to Dec. 3, an EU filing showed.

The European Commission, which opened a full-scale investigation last month on concerns that the deal would reduce competition on Spanish local and international routes, had previously set a Nov. 5 deadline.

Since the start of the pandemic, the EU competition regulator has extended its deadlines in a number of merger cases to allow companies more time to gather information from clients and rivals necessary to assess deals.

IAG may have to offer concessions, such as giving up certain routes, to secure EU approval for the Air Europa deal.

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